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From the Desk of David O’Toole / copywriter
Domain Names and TLDs? Simply put, your domain name is your website address. For example, the website address for this blog can be found at www.copyglow.com – here are 15 tips and strategies on how to choose a good (or great) one. A friend for life, it may be a personal blog, maybe something digital marketing related, who knows?
Digital Age of Wonder
In this digital age of wonder we live in, ‘anyone can be a star’ (Paddy Mooney – Saints and Sinners). Well folks, if it’s not stardom you’re seeking, how about becoming an internet entrepreneur? There are so many avenues open to all of us here.
One thing is for sure. If you want to do anything worthwhile online, a great domain name will help immensely. It’s an investment, in the right hands. It’s a great feeling having your own website and domain name, to do with what you will. It looks professional, it can look just cool too if you want. It could be about anything, it’s your online stage so to speak.
In this article, we have a look at the world of domain names, websites, and blogs.
- Digital Real Estate
- Domain Flipping
- .com is Strong
- Niche & Topics
- The ‘Over the Telephone Technique’
- Thesaurus Time
- Get It Right First Time
- The ‘Scrabble Technique’
- Poodles Anyone?
- Domain Name Generators
- Country Designation TLDs
- The Delicio.us Trick
- The Empty Search-Box Search
- Expired Domains
- Trademark Test
What you need is a domain name that is closely related to your topic of interest (in this case for the keyword ‘copy’), I wanted something short ‘n’ sweet and brandable.
Ok, that seems pretty obvious sure, but getting your hands on a domain name that you want can be a real problem nowadays. Many domain names are gone already, but there are satisfactory ways around the issue. Let’s have a look at a few options here.
Digital Real Estate
Think of your domain name and website as your ‘digital real estate’. Get it right and then move in. You live there, and you don’t need to depend on anyone to run it the way you want to. Hey, you might invite Facebook or Twitter to come and visit you sometime.
Note: While Google mainly concentrates nowadays on social media interaction with your website (e.g. FB likes, clicks, etc), it’s still important to have your main ‘keyword’ in your domain name title. This helps it come up in searches on the search engines. Plus of course, it will make sense to interested people who are searching for related info.
Think like Google, and think like someone who would be searching for the topic in question. Always simultaneously think from both an ‘SEO’ (Search Engine Optimization) angle, and also a ‘human’ angle. SEO helps get your site discovered, and your content is read by people. Both need to be fed.
So if your area of interest is ’60s fashion’ for example, you should have that in your domain name. Something like www.cool60sfashion.com − that’s actually available as I write by the way! But it’s not always that way. Most names that you initially think of will be taken already.
Insurance dotcom ?
For example, the domain name ‘insurance.com’ has been snapped up years ago and could be worth a small fortune. So you can forget the likes of that. But with a little cunning and experimentation, you can still find a great domain name.
‘Domaining’ is a subject unto itself, but for now we just need to know a few techniques and ‘tricks’ to acquire a suitable domain name. But look up ‘Domain Flipping’ if you’re interested in finding out more about buying and selling domains.
One of the biggest flipping platforms online is called flippa.com, it’s a very interesting, and potentially lucrative world.
.com is Strong Luke
One tip to give here is that ‘.com’ is still the most widely recognized and trusted type of site address. Other TLDs (Top-Level Domains/name extensions) are .net, .org, .info, .biz, .co, among many. Always try to get the .com version if you can.
‘.net’ is good for ‘community’ driven websites, ‘.org’ for establishment style, and ‘.info’ an informational site. But a ‘.com’ can be almost any style of website, plus it’s totally global, accepted, and understood everywhere in the world.
There are so many new TLDs at this stage, it’s hard to keep track of them all. There are 494 TLDs currently offered by registrar GoDaddy alone, including:
I love that ‘.space’ one. Hmm maybe someday in the distant future. For now I’m sticking with .com, can’t go wrong.
Niche & Topics:
Let’s say that the topic you want your blog to be about is ‘insurance’, you could first try the following: Insert a short descriptive word/phrase/color before your keyword like:
Or perhaps craftyinsurance.com, validinsurance.com, competititiveinsurance.com, wellpricedinsurance.com
I tried these just now and the results are:
- craftyinsurance.com – Available
- validinsurance.com – Available
- competititiveinsurance.com – Not Available
- wellpricedinsurance.com – Not Available
Website Host Note: You can use letters (abc), numbers (123) and dashes/hyphens (−−−) in the domain name. Spaces are not allowed, and the domain cannot begin or end with a dash. You may use up to maximum of 67 characters for each domain name (inclusive of the TLD, ie. .com part).
Tip: Keep your domain name as short and memorable as possible. For various reasons, it’s best to avoid dashes unless absolutely necessary. For example, ‘think telephone’ (see the following tip) ..
The ‘Over the Telephone Technique’
Imagine that you’re trying to tell somebody your domain name over a phone-call. You don’t want to be blabbering out a long-winded name with dashes-and-dashes in it. For example ‘”Oh yeah my site is at blah-hyphen-blah-hyphen-something-else dotcom”. Just don’t go there my friend.
And remember, that if you use numbers in your domain name, you will have to explain how the number is written. Is it written as “four”, or “4”? If it’s a golf-related site, it might also be written as “fore”. That can totally f ..complicate the matter.
So be wary of using numbers. Keep your domain name as short as possible, preferably one to two words, and keep the ‘over the telephone technique’ in mind. In other words “avoid dashes like the plague”.
Most one-word domain names will be taken already, so use a thesaurus and see if you can come up with an alternative. Try mixing in your main keyword with a related synonym.
You can also try adding your main keyword/s with a word after it of course. In our example below this would be something like: insurancesavers.com, insurancethrift.com and so on. Just for curiosity’s sake, I looked these up to see if they are available. The results were:
insurancesavers.com Not Available
insurancethrift.com Not Available
So you can see that not all ideas will be available to you. But you will find something if you keep trying out different variations like this.
Also note that this particular niche (insurance) is very competitive with big, corporate companies involved in it − there’s a lot of money to be made in the insurance business as we all know. I would suggest that your first website/Blog should be in a less competitive and corporate niche.
Get It Right First Time
Don’t forget that you will be living with your domain name for years to come. So get it right the first time and it will save you a lot of hassle and headaches, OVER time.
Is it really is worth your while spending time researching on this first naming step? Yes, it is a foundation upon which all your work will be built on. It’s almost like naming a baby .. because it will be ‘your baby’ if you get into it and take action on it. Make a plan ..
As mentioned, a useful trick to try if you’re looking for a particular word but it’s not available, is to use a Thesaurus, and find a few synonyms. Many a time this will bring up some excellent alternative words, but can still get the message across. And more importantly, the domain name may be available. Try https://www.thesaurus.com/. Input your main word and check out the alternatives.
The ‘Scrabble Technique’
The idea of the Scrabble Technique is to find useful and useable two-letter words that can go before your main keyword. This keeps the name short. For example, you could try the word “go”. Using our insurance example we get goinsurance.com (which is taken btw), but there are many alternatives. Work from the following list and see what you can come up with. Experimentation is key here, and it’s fun too.
The most common two-letter words are of, to, in, it, is, be, as, at, so, we, he, by, or, on, do, if, me, my, up, an, go, no, us, am.
Here’s a handy list of two-letter suggestions, found at www.lexico.com/en/explore/two-letter-words
Useful two-letter words I like myself are: in, us, so, be, ox, ab (bodybuilding related), om (meditation-related), ka (related to ancient Egypt, historical) … if you can connect the two-letter word with your niche, you’re onto a potential winner. For example, the two-letter word “om” might not make much sense on many domain names, but it would be a perfect match for maybe a meditation or Yoga based blog.
If you can’t find the right two-letter word, move onto three-letter words using the Scrabble Technique. Then four-letter, five-letter, etc. All the while keeping brevity in mind. Of course, you can also go for one letter words if you can get the title to make sense.
I like what SEO Master ‘Brian Dean’ did with his domain name. Simple and pretty ingenious with it. He just added a letter ‘o’ to the heavily targeted SEO related word ‘backlink’. Btw, If you’re into learning how to get traffic to your website, check out www.backlinko.com – the info on it is first class. This trick works on many a domain name, it makes sense, looks great, and is totally brandable. I’ve used that one myself.
Domain Name Generators
A really useful technique to use in domain name hunting is to use an online domain name generator. This can bring up some excellent ideas that you can expand on.
https://www.nameboy.com/ (I have no connections with this site btw)
A handful of suggestions run off the keyword ‘insurance’, came up with a few useful possibilities, including:
- michiganinsurance (if you’re targeting Michigan of course)
Country Designation TLDs
Here’s another option which might be just what you’re looking for, the country designation approach. Each country in the world has its own TLD (name extension). So, for example, Ireland uses the TLD “.ie”.
This has the effect of laser targeting a niche to the country you are operating in and targeting.
So you’d be in with a better chance of getting a domain name such as “insurance.ie”, as opposed to ‘insurance.com’. Or you could try any country you are targeting. Some country designated examples would be:
- Australia .au
- Brazil .br
- Denmark .dk
- European Union .eu
- France .fr
- Germany .de
- Spain .es
- Switzerland .ch
Check out https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Internet_top-level_domains for more info on this.
Using a Country targeted address can be easier to get ‘up the search results’ in certain country-specific search engines (the most well-known search engine is of course Google). If your website is strongly targeted to one particular country it can be worth your while to get the country-specific TLD address. The best option is to get the country-specific and the ‘.com’ too if it’s available.
Note: Some country domains can only be registered by businesses that operate in those countries, while others are available freely to anyone willing to pay the domain fee (sometimes these specific country fees can be comparatively high compared to an $11 or so a year ‘.com’ domain name).
A good example of an alternative TLD use is the ‘.tv’ one. It’s actually a country TLD, but many television stations have bought domains using it.
The domain name is popular, and thus economically valuable because it is, of course, an abbreviation of the word television.
Actually, the TLD ‘.tv’ actually stands for the islands of Tuvalu which is a Polynesian island nation located in the Pacific Ocean, midway between Hawaii and Australia.
The Delicio.us Trick
Sometimes the TLD part can be used as part of the site name itself. One case of this would be the social website ‘www.delicio.us’. They ran with this for a while but nowadays that link redirects you to https://delicious.com/ − yup ‘.com’ is strong Luke.
note: Traditionally there used to be a distinction that .org domains were for non−profits and .net domains were for internet companies. But as there are no regulations, that doesn’t really apply anymore.
These days, anyone can get a .org or .net domain− if the ‘.com’ of the name you want is gone it could be an option worth looking at. But note that domain-flippers always want to buy a dotcom address as opposed to any other. The value is in the dotcom.
Internet Early Days + Search Engines
In the early days of the Internet, a website’s domain name had a strong influence on the mighty Google and other search engines. Today this is not the case quite as much (it is still important from the ‘human’ angle though).
And there are other options to get much-needed website traffic from different sources such as Facebook and Social Media. But for now, we just want to get a good related name which suits our subject matter, looks neat, is SEO (Search Engine Optimised) friendly, and sounds catchy.
So yes, it’s still important though to try and get your main keyword into the domain name, so always do that if possible. It just makes it easier to tell people about it. Especially if it’s a one−to−one ‘real world’ situation like you might have on a mobile phone or in a loud Disco, or even at your friendly local.
States and Counties
I noticed that one of the suggestions above was michiganinsurance.com – this is another way that you can seriously fine-tune your domain-name. Target the area itself that you are aiming for. Ok, it lowers down the number of people that might be interested in your service, but you can’t get much more targeted than using an actual place-name.
Taking into account that the population of Michigan is estimated at 9.996 million (2018), that opens up many possibilities. So don’t be afraid to zone-in on a specific area because of lower numbers. Think in terms of “targeting”, it’s a more finely tuned location-based address.
One option open to domain-name-hunters which can be well worth exploring is ‘expired domains’. As the name suggests, these are domain names where the owner has let the name expire. This can be for various reasons. Try freshdrop dotcom to get ideas on expired domains.
You can choose various settings for making the search such as:
1-100+CHARACTERS (keep character numbers as low as possible)
0-22+AGE (years – the older the better)
0-2000+BACKLINKS (try to get high ranked backlinks from recognized authority sites)
An example I have just seen is ‘ChildrensDentalInsurance.com’. That’s VERY specific if a bit too long. I’d probably start looking at “www.kidsdentalinsurance.com” and search along those lines.
Or what about ‘insurancehereford.com’. Obviously you would need to be targeting ‘Hereford’ for this one to work. But it’s just to give you ideas of what’s possible with this expired domains approach.
Let’s move away from insurance for a moment, and try a completely different niche. This time we’re going to look at the doggie world. This is a huge niche to work in, and it’s got a lot of potential. Do you know anybody that specializes in breeding or taking care of Poodles? Expired domains have got it covered:
Poodles.com is taken since 1997, but mypoodles.com is available at the time of writing. That’s a good example of using the Scrabble technique.
You could take any breed of dog and find a suitable domain name based on it. The more you drill down on the breed, the more available results you will get.
Tip: the most popular purebred dog breed in the U.S., is the Labrador Retriever. Here are two related dropped domains, which could be ideal if you’re in the relevant market.
Of course, these are just examples given here to demonstrate what’s possible. Use your own search criteria and see what’s out there. Domain name hunting is a bit of an adventure, and when you come across one that is perfect and you manage to grab it, it’s a great feeling.
Keeping with our furry friend examples, here’s a few cool-cat names available. We all know how big cats are on the ‘Net, thank you Reddit.
ladyofcats.com (got the teeshirt?)
vampcats.com (just a cool name with many possibilities)
jazzycats.com (great name for a Jazz related music site)
Money Money Money
Of course, the subject of money is an evergreen topic with all of us.
wewinmoney.com [great brandable name for a competition based blog]
The Empty Search-box Search
Another search you can do on freshdrop, is to leave the search box empty, and just choose how many characters you want. Tick off ‘Exclude Hyphen’, ‘Exclude Numbers’, and choose ‘.com’ only. Now the majority of names you see will be useless unpronounceable names, forget them. Instead, look for a name that you can say.
Some of these pronounceable names would make for a great brand name if you have an open mind on it. I just did a 0-16 letter search with no keywords and I spotted ‘usbcube.com’. That could have the potential for a computer-related niche.
A ‘USB’ connects peripheral devices such as digital cameras, mice, keyboards, printers, scanners, media devices, external hard drives, and flash drives, to your PC. So it could have a lot of possibilities, and it’s computer related.
A Gigantic Plus Benefit
A HUGE plus in having the perfect domain name is that your email address will be so professional looking. This is extremely important if you want to do any type of business online. That can’t be overstated enough really. It just gives you that added extra.
- VIP Note: Just make sure that you never actually put your email address online in any way. If you do that, you run the risk of being spammed by fiendish, dastardly robots. They can virtually destroy your mailbox by filling it full of spam and rubbish, that you’ll never even see the mails you want. It can happen overnight.
Make sure to do a trademark test on your super-cool new name. This can be a costly and potentially monumental error if you make it.
Luckily for us, it’s easy to check at:
And here’s the test result you’re looking for:
Trademark Search Results
Your search for trademarks did not match any records
First Impressions Count
Here are a few more reasons for picking a killer domain name.
- It’s Your First Impression
- It Affects SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- It Defines YOUR BRAND!
So you can see that there are a lot of options open to you when you’re looking for a perfect domain name. It takes a bit of time and research, but you will find out that it’s WELL worth the effort. You will have a friend for life if you take the time to do it right.
Thanks for reading hope you picked up something useful. If you do find a perfect domain name using some of these tips and tricks, be sure to let us know. Spread the word around on your new baby!
© 2019 https://copyglow.com
Facebook Ad Formats & Tips
From the Desk of David O’Toole/copywriter
We’re all familiar with Facebook, it’s pretty much everywhere these days. It’s even seen in highstreet ‘real world’ shops and stores. The ‘Like Us on Facebook‘ ad shown on the doorway or main window, or on a business card handout, business flyers .. FB are everywhere.
Advertise on Facebook Rules & Image Dimensions
If you want to advertise on FB itself, you just need to set up an Advertisement, build the ad, and off you go.
Of course, you will have to pay Facebook for the privilege of running your ad. That’s where FB makes their money. They’re not in it because of their love of your funny surprised-cat Tee-shirt, they don’t care about Grumpy Cat, they want money.
Nothing unusual in that, it’s the way the advertising world works.
Now if you do run an ad on FB, you need to get your campaign set up properly and stick to their rules. Your ad dimensions must be the exact sizes required, or else they will point blank refuse your ad.
Here’s a quick look at the Facebook ad dimensions you can use.
- Facebook Ad – Large (1200 x 900 px)
- Facebook Ad – Medium (1200 x 628 px)
- Facebook Ad – Small (1200 x 444 px)
As you might suspect, it’s crucial that you use an image that will appeal to your target audience. It’s got to grab their attention on their busy newsfeed.
FB Ad Engagement is CRUCIAL
Whether or not they will even see your ad will depend on a number of factors. But the main criteria here is ENGAGEMENT. Are people actually clicking on your ad? Or are they just ignoring it? Note: By the way, that’s how Google is operating these days aswell. They’re basing their stats and your results on engagements too. They want to see people interacting with ads, and with your blog or website. Ok, back to FB ..
Engagement will drive the number of times FB will display your ad, and it will also drive the ad cost either up or down. So it is absolutely vital that you bear this in mind when you are creating your ad media.
The FB Text Rule
One thing that you have to keep in mind when designing your FB ad, is their text rule. Basically FB states that you must keep your text to a minimum on your ad. They actually prefer it if you don’t have any text (ad copy) on your ad. Here’s an example large size FB ad (1200 x 900 px):
This is what FB says about this particular ad example above:
“Image Text: Medium
Your ad’s reach may be much lower.
Your ad reach may be much lower than usual because there’s too much text in the ad image. Facebook prefers ad images with little or no text. Consider changing your image before placing your order.“
What? They prefer your ad to have no text whatsoever. As an advertiser, this doesn’t make much sense, because you must have the relevant text/copy on your ad to tell people what they can expect if they click on it. How will it benefit them? Interested visitors want to know, why else would they click on it?
This suits FB because they make more money out of it, but it’s a kiss of death for a marketer. So you have to figure out a way to grab attention with your ad copy, but at the same time keep the number of words down or they’ll cut off your reach. It’s a real dilemma for advertisers.
I redesigned that ad example above in order to get it to be accepted ‘normally’ by FB:
Now it’s getting through their filter. It’s got the text I wanted to include, but I had to shrink down the size of it. It’s also got a ‘Call-to-Action’ (CTA), saying “Ask Me How”. A CTA is vital to have if you want your ad to be effective. Tell people exactly what you want them to do next.
Another useful tip you can use for making your FB ad stand out is to use a colored border that’s different from the regular FB colors. You can even go so far as to use a ‘garish’ border, even something ‘ugly’ some might say. Here’s an example of a cool Ancient Egypt T-Shirt and related merchandise:
That graphic gets away from the usual blue colors that FB uses, and this makes it stand out on the reader’s feeds
You need to use every trick in the book at your disposal. Because, as ‘Mr. Somewhat Cynical‘ maintains, FB is doing exactly that. They want you to run ads with no copy on them. You could say that that’s a sneaky tactic. I strongly suggest that you do use strong copy on your Ad images.
You can check how your text on an ad is doing at facebook.com/ads/tools/text_overlay
I designed a few FB Ads for you to have a look at. Click an image below to access and click the magnifying glass. Double-tap to expand/contract, scroll through with the >
Are These FB Ads Worth It?
Yes, they are a proven way to advertise. But you need to play the game by FB rules. Spend time learning about what they require, and then use them to get the results you are looking for.
To get maximum exposure on your FB ads, make sure to use strong copywriting, matching graphics, and attention-grabbing creatives. Why not save yourself the heartache and hassles involved and talk to me about the best steps you can take here. Get a free consultation by using the contact form below to reach me.
Thanks for visiting and reading, hope you picked up something useful my digital marketing friend.
From the Desk of David O’Toole/copywriter
9 x Essential WordPress Plugins Built For Speed + Security
From the Desk of David O’Toole / copywriter
One of the powerful built-in set of tools you can use with WordPress on your Blog are called ‘Plugins’. Plugins give you total customizing control over your site. What it looks like, how it performs.
Using the essential plugins from this list below will help you to get your site running as fast as possible which Google absolutely loves. In fact, they punish slow sites (more info on that to follow). The list also includes plugins that will help protect your blog from spammers, target social media, and also keep you legally compliant.
Essential WordPress Blog Plugins
Your blog might be an eStore or just a place where you put down your daily thoughts for everyone to see and discuss, maybe even rant and rave a little.
Whatever the case, you’ll want it running smooth and fast. And you need it to simultaneously tell people AND the search engines, exactly what it’s about. You need it to communicate with the mighty Google, MSN and that gang, and also connect with people too. So your message needs to be written with both of those aims in mind. Always think ‘GooGLE and PeoPLE’ when you’re writing.
Put it this way. If you don’t optimize for the search engines, they won’t see you and subsequently they won’t list you. That means that nobody will ever get to read your wonderful work or visit your online shop. That’s a proverbial ‘Ghost Website’ situation as they say in the biz.
It’s pretty easy to get your Plugins in order when you know what to look for. So here’s a little list of the essential ones which you should set up and use.
Tip: One thing you should know is that there are free plugins and paid (Premium) ones. Most free plugins can be upgraded to Premium, but it is not always necessary to do that. Many times it is not a necessity.
So yeah, here’s a look at my own particular faves which I (and the industry) think are pretty much indispensable. In fact, I am using them on my website at copyglow.com
Personal experience tip: it’s best to keep the number of plugins you use to a minimum, it helps increase site speed. I know I’m always going on about site speed here, but you’ve got to think in ‘Google Mode’ at all times when it comes to your WP setup.
So although it can be tempting to install a multitude of excellent looking plugins, it’s best to keep those Plugin numbers down. I think they can become a bit addictive actually if you’re not careful.
My Recommended Plugins
Some great news is that these critical plugins listed below are all free. Basically their main purpose is to improve what they call ‘user experience’. Which just means making sure that your visitor’s visit is a good one. It’s important to keep in mind that as far as Google is concerned, a user’s ‘site experience’ is a MAJOR issue. Google tracks EVERYTHING.
So if your website/blog is as slow as a tortoise with a sprained ankle, it will affect your ratings in the search engines. Bear in mind that if someone clicks to visit a page on your site and it takes too long to load, they will just click off to somewhere else. Yup, think iRobot and iPerson at the same time. Oh, and don’t forget the iTortoise aspect too, he needs to be avoided at all costs.
Akismet is pretty much an industry standard that will protect your blog from spam comments. It blocks the spamming robots posting rubbish (and there are a lot of them at work, even while you sleep). You could wake up one morning to hundreds of spam comments if you don’t use a spam comment blocker.
Sitemap This plugin will build a Sitemap for your website. A sitemap tells the search engines what’s on your site in robot speak. Here’s the plugin description (from Google themselves surprise surprise – it’s mega-important):
This plugin will improve SEO by helping search engines better index your site using sitemaps.
Sitemap robot code looks something like the following example. Humans can safely ignore it, but the search engine robots gobble it up. It’s their food, so be a good netizen and feed them. Or in jargon style speak, “optimize interaction with bots”.
Allow: /wp-admin/*** -ajax.php
All in One SEO Pack
All-in-One-SEO-Pack basically tells both people and the search engines what your website is all about. It allows you to add in your main blog titles, descriptions, meta-tags (Search Engine food), and keywords. You can then use it on all your individual blog posts and pages. File under ‘an absolutely vital SEO plugin’.
Contact Form 7
This is a simple but flexible contact form, which does exactly what it says on the tin. It enables visitors and potential customers to reach out and contact you about your services, or just to start initial conversations. It’s pretty vital to have this for any business blog. Just putting your eMail address on your site is a big no-no, because spam robots will attack that too.
What better example can I give here than my own contact form on copyglow. Feel free to use it to get in touch with me, let’s talk.
GDPR Cookie Consent
GDPR Cookie Consent is compulsory to have on your blog nowadays, especially if you’re based in Europe. It’s a simple way to show that your website complies with the EU Cookie Law / GDPR. You’ve got to show a message something like the following and get an ‘ok’ from visitors.
The GDPR Cookie Consent WP Plugin does exactly that, it keeps everything legit.
LiteSpeed Cache: This essential plugin as the name suggests helps to dramatically speed up your site. Description: High-performance page caching and site optimization from LiteSpeed. Page caching is another method that can help you to improve the load time of your web pages and thus optimize your site for the search engines.
Smush Plugin: Once again we’re concerned with site speed and user-experience here. The Smush plugin reduces image file sizes, improves performance, and boosts your Search Engine Optimization (SEO). You’ve got to keep your image file sizes as small as possible, or they will completely drag down your site speed. And, as previously mentioned, Google will actually ‘punish’ slow sites in its search results. File under ‘absolutely must-have’.
Sassy Social Share
We all know how important Social Media is these days. I was looking for a plugin that would enable me to add Social Share buttons to any site I was building. I found that ‘Sassy Social Share’ was the best one for me. In their own words: “Slickest, Simplest, and Optimized Share buttons. Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Pinterest, WhatsApp and over 100 more”.
You’ll see ‘Sassy Social Share’ at work throughout this site. Oh, look there’s one there to the left of this Post. Go ahead and click on your fave social media platform to see how it works, and share the love with one of your blog-building-buddies. Appreciated friend.
Plugin Wrapup Roundup
Well there you have it, it’s a short enough list. But these really are the best of the most crucial plugins you need at a minimum. You can always build on and add more to your WP blog as and when required.
- Akismet Anti-Spam
- All in One SEO Pack
- Contact Form 7
- GDPR Cookie Consent
- LiteSpeed Cache
- Sassy Social Share
- Table of Contents (recommended for Skyscraper Pages)
These key ones will get you up and running fast. I think that they should be compulsory for every WP blog.
Vital Extra: Keep Your PHP Version Up to Date
Tip: Make sure that your WordPress blog has an up-to-date version of PHP. This really helps speed up your blog for starters. Using an outdated PHP version leaves your site vulnerable to hacker attacks. Let me know if you need help with that.
p.s. I also use and recommend (for long ‘Skyscraper Pages’), a plugin called ‘Table of Contents’. I think that it’s pretty crucial for this type of ‘Super-Page’. It adds a super-smooth scrolling effect to the page content list and helps aid navigation on it.
© 2019 https://copyglow.com
From the Desk of David O’Toole / copywriter
Sell Other People’s Expertise
I distinctly remember when I first learned about affiliate marketing. At the time, I had somehow landed up living in Perth, Australia.
The reason I’m telling this story about my internet-marketing adventures, is that it demonstrates how anyone can use their own life experience and skills, then use it to their advantage when it comes down to internet marketing.
Most everyone is good at something, maybe good at a hobby, strong in a certain sport, teaches a subject, you get the picture. Well, you can bank that. Here’s how I did it anyway, you can do the same.
I’d best give a brief little story about my musical background first, which I managed to change into affiliate marketing products and online sales. The same criteria apply to anyone wanting to get into the digital marketing world. It doesn’t matter who or what you are, everyone has the skills to repeat this process. Just change the menu to suit yourself.
Before I hit Oz, I had been scraping a living together as a musician in Ireland. I say ‘scraping’, because there were some good, and some not so good times.
I eventually ended up playing with a band in Lanzarote, and then Mallorca. Now, these were amazing gigs to have, compared to the mundane gigs I was used to in Ireland.
The Irish gig setup was a difficult enough job, and a job it is. Sure, there were some funny times, mixed in with some fantastic nights. But it was a lifestyle in itself, something different and certainly not run of the mill. I was fortunate enough to meet some amazing people and musicians through it. Even ended up working with some friendly folks from a circus ‘Hola, ¿Qué tal? amigos‘.
My Dublin gigging adventures included playing a Friday night residency in a Blues-Rock band with Brian Downey (Thin Lizzy) at the back, the incredible Gary Moore turned up one night .. and also many a gig in a band with Glen Power (from The Script), in both Dublin and Mallorca.
An eight-month stint in The Dubliner pub in Mallorca would take a book to write lol. Ok, so back to Ireland ..
Back to Ireland
‘Up and downtimes gigging with original and covers bands in Ireland’ would probably be the best way to put it. Sometimes a mixture of both, anything to pull in a penny.
I was also giving guitar lessons to students, and I bought a Commodore C64 from one of them. That was the start of my computer journey.
I then moved up to an Atari ST (Cubase was amazing on that), Windows 98, then Windows XP .. in German, ouch and ja ja.
The Proverbial ‘Hoover Salesman’
And in the meantime, I was also working a ‘normal’ job. Yes, I was that proverbial ‘Hoover Salesman’. Well, it was a home appliance, electrical repairs, and sales shop. So I dealt with various white goods which included hoovers. So I will claim that title, I did sell ‘em. That’s my story and I’m a-sticking to it.
- Note: First of all, ‘Hoover Salesman’ is a bad name to call my job at the time. Because ‘Hoover’ is a brand name, the correct term to use there would be ‘vacuum cleaner’. Lol, the number of times I had to explain that to customers, and now I find myself saying it on the internet. But today, I see ‘branding’ in a different light.
Anyway, I learned a lot about salesmanship in that little shop, it had it’s learning curve. It was my first B2C experience in the real world I guess you could say (Later I also worked in the B2B section of this industry too).
I was good at it after a while, dedicated myself to the task. Kept learning and improving as much as I could. I became manager of this tiny little shop, which turned into a mini-goldmine for the owner.
Ok sorry, I’m rabbiting on about hoovers, sorry ‘vacuum cleaners’. Now, where was I?
Back to Perth, Australia
Oh yes, we were on about affiliate marketing. So there I was in Perth, and I needed to come up with some way to start earning money outside of being a musician because the gig scene wasn’t too healthy where I was.
I distinctly remember asking myself one day “Hmmm I wonder is it possible to make money on the internet?“. I really didn’t know, it was early days for the digital marketing industry as such. Talk about ‘green’, even the industry itself was a newbie at the time :).
Well, I was so happy (relieved actually) to learn that it was indeed possible to earn money online, my idea wasn’t crazy after all. And I’ve been at it ever since.
Hobby Based Affiliate Products
As I got more into it, I learned from a website called Sitesell, about selling hobby-based affiliate products. So that’s where I started. Actually I first discovered the whole world of internet marketing through a Canadian guy called Ken Evoy, along with that Sitesell program. I’m forever thankful Ken Evoy.
I learned from the recognized ‘Gurus’ as time went on, learned the artform you could say. Indeed, I was well bitten by the IM bug, even studied it in college and went on to earn a diploma in digital marketing.
I learned the digital marketing ropes and I put together guitar packages and sold them through Clickbank. Through Clickbank I got affiliates to sell them too.
My First Digital Product
Here’s one of my early products shown below, it was concerning the electric guitar, based and built upon many years of playing experience. It was centered on a ‘hobby’ product as suggested, but lol it was more of an obsession, to be honest. So that helped.
My tactics included approaching other guitar webmasters to promote the programs through their list (this is a golden opportunity, can’t recommend it enough). But in order for this technique to work, your product must be of high quality. If it’s not, other webmasters are not going to promote it to their list. Their reputation depends on their recommendations.
I also ran affiliate ads for musician sites in the US and Europe. Oh, and I had a few Adsense ads running as well.
Software Program Affiliate
I went on to work as an affiliate for a guitar software program which I used, and I knew that it was an excellent piece of software. I used it myself, and I highly recommended it to my own guitar students.
This is a typical way to run a niche related affiliate website. I learned a lot and made some ‘money while you sleep’, as they say in IM land.
Enter the Copywriter
Nowadays I write about affiliate and digital marketing as a copywriter. I found that going from the transition of being a creative musician (including a lyric writer) to copywriter, had many similarities. Both styles of writing have a lot in common which I was glad to discover. That meant I wouldn’t have to start from scratch learning a new skill. And copywriting is indeed a skill that you have to learn, and aim to master. It’s like playing an instrument, there’s always something new to learn.
I fell in love with it, it’s an art form in itself. And not only that, it’s been scientifically proven that it works. When I first read that statement, I thought it was fake. But it ain’t. That’s getting into A/B testing and related stuff. I’m gonna cover that in a future post.
Yup, I’m fascinated by the psychological end of copywriting, just love it. Watch out though, because it can become infectious (that’s a positive IF you take the appropriate action and use it). It can also make a huge positive difference to your bottom line in both on, and offline sales.
The Affiliate Marketing Copywriter
And now we’re back to Affiliate Marketing, hurray sez you. This is where the Copywriting comes in.
If you want to sell an affiliate product (or anything) online, it is, without a doubt, best to use some strong copywriting. This will make all the difference to your sales.
So there you go, I did a bit of hunting around and came up with some answers that changed my life. I learned that it WAS possible to earn money online. I got hooked straight away. And if I can do it with no ‘proper job‘ history behind me (or a CV for that matter), anybody can. Call it a ‘career change’ if you like. Upgrade your skills as you go if necessary.
Giant Communication Tool
See, I realized after a while that the computer, along with the internet was just one giant communication tool. That’s how I began to look at it. A global way to connect and network with people from all over the world. And if you happen to have something to sell to interested parties along the way, digital marketing is the way to go.
If you don’t have a product as of yet, or maybe even an eBook (that’s how I started), well create one. Concentrate on a niche that you know something about, write an eBook about it, and sell it online. Maybe even go for selling it on a platform like Kindle or Amazon.
Hmmm, customers, sales, communication with people. Now, where had I come across this before? Aha, enter Mr. Hoover Salesman once more. But this time I switched my previous real-world sales skills, to suit the new world of digital marketing. Transition complete, but ALWAYS still learning and earning.
Hey, if you have done something similar, or would like to learn more about digital marketing, please leave a comment below would love to hear your story.
Hover Over an Image to Start ..
I’m a copywriter that specializes in digital marketing, or internet marketing as it is also commonly known as.
I specialize in the following forms of digital marketing copy:
- Email Sequences that move buyers down your sales funnel
- Blog Posts that drive traffic
- Website Articles that encourage interaction
- Landing pages that generate leads
- Store Descriptions that boost visitors and sales
- Lead magnets that generate business inquiries
- WordPress Posts and Pages that attract visitors
- About Me Pages – use these to generate positive results (there’s a copywriting ‘trick’ involved)
I’m also Adobe Photoshop certified, and a bit of a graphics nerd tbh. Like copywriting, graphics play a very important role. The graphics side of my copywriting service is optional, you may have your own in-house graphic designer.
But be aware that related copywriting graphics is an art form in itself. There’s more to than just choosing a pretty picture, there’s psychology at work too. Well, there should be if you want to get the best results and reactions (clicks, in other words).
Blog Articles Samples < [click to view samples]
Power up your blog with professional copy and graphics. So What? Watch your visitors and signup numbers go up and up. You provide the niche, I’ll do the research and fire up the writing. Together we’ll rocket up your articles into the blog stratosphere. Reach out and contact me, let’s get this ball rolling.
Email Ads and Copy < [click to view samples]
Many new technologies claim they have ‘killed email’ once and for all… they haven’t. Check out these stats below from the officially recognized DMI (Digital Marketing Institute). Prepare to be mind-blown. Use these stats to your digital-marketing advantage, increase sales and signups. It’s like having a marketing ‘secret-weapon’.
Use Copywriter Powered Magic Words and Graphics < [click to view samples]
There is one way that you can improve on copywriting which makes an absolutely stunning difference. The way to do this is to COMBINE some pro copywriting with supportive graphics. So What? Emulate it yourself and put it into action, then watch your ROI rise dramatically.
Social Media Ads & Copy < [click to view samples]
Increase your sales on any social media platform with laser persuasive copy and graphics. I’ll work with you on it, you’ll see the difference. You see, copywriters look at things from a different angle, and that’s what can make such a positive difference in a digital- marketing campaign. So What? Your bank balance will thank you for it, your wallet may well start bulging if all goes according to plan. This can have a major over-night effect on your sales. Get in touch with me for a free consultation, and we’ll make a start.
Digital Marketing and Products < [click to view samples]
Boost your product sales with some uniquely targeted ‘Sherlock Holmes‘ style techniques. You provide the product, I’ll do the research. Any niche available to target, let’s boost your sales. Gain deep audience insights. You won’t believe how far you can take this with Facebook ads. You can almost tell what your target customers had for breakfast this morning. So What? Now that type of heavy intel can be seriously used to increase your sales, often immediately, with trackable stats.
If you need to ask me anything, or just want to set up a free consultation, please use the contact form below, thank you.