Oct 26 2016

My Weird and Creepy French Teacher

What is it about language teachers? Are they all just weird and creepy or what? Well, I suppose they can’t all be like that, and i should be careful what I say since my sister is one, but seriously, I look back on all the language teachers I’ve had and I just think, honestly, WTF?

There was the pipe-smoking garden gnome-looking dude. I’m not going to mention any names. He was kind of cool, but rumour had it that he was gay (this was twenty-five years ago, btw, so this really was news), and that he had a truly massive schlong. His nickname was ‘Chopper’, because of said enormous appendage.

There was the fabulously overweight dude who always wore those weird tinted glasses that I have always somehow associated with child molesters. You know the kind, eighties radio DJs always seemed to wear them. Now he was actually a nice guy. Or at least, he was nice to me. Is it worth pointing out that I myself was a small and handsome young boy at the time? I don’t know. But he never behaved inappropriately towards me, except by perhaps being a touch over-familiar but that’s not a crime now is it?

The worst wasn’t a gay man or even a man at all, but a woman in her middle years. Doubtless she was very attractive when she was younger, but when I knew her I was only a teenager and she must have been in her lated forties – older than or old enough to be my mother. However, she seemed to take great delight in flirting with me outrageously. Or at least, that’s what I thought, and that’s what all my classmates seemed to think too. I don’t know if I was just a cocky little shit and she was just trying to make me uncomfortable in return for being the class clown, but I tell you, it was weird.

I don’t care how good I was at French, when she came and sat on the desk in front of me I really didn’t know what to do with myself. I suppose I quite liked it, even if she was a bit strange and way, way, way too old for me. C’est la vie!

Jun 12 2016

A Look at The Benefits of PPC Advertising

Pay Per Click advertising is a great marketing tool that anyone can take advantage of to promote their websites, or their affiliate products (if the merchant allows this). It allows a marketer to get to the top of the SERPs, even if they have a relatively new website, or to get their product featured on a number of websites in prominent advertising spots.

You can market on Facebook using pay per click, for example, and if you do so then your post or page will be shown in the streams of a number of users – but you don’t pay each time the post is shown; you pay only if the user clicks on the post. This is an important distinction, and one that can greatly reduce the cost of your advertising campaign – and the cost of conversions, especially if you write good posts that make it clear what it is you are promoting. With well-written ad copy, the only people that will click on your posts are people who are interested enough to want to learn more, and those people are likely to convert. There’s no money wasted on impressions from people who don’t want to buy; you’re just paying for the ‘good’ traffic.

Pay per click advertising offers near-instant feedback and results. With search engine optimisation, you have to wait for the search engines to index your site and pick up on links, then for the algorithms to kick in and weigh the ‘authority’ and ‘quality’ of your site. With social media marketing, you have to build up a follower base then wait for them to respond to and engage with your posts. With PPC, you just post the ad, fund your account, and then sit back and watch your analytics to see what happens.

PPC advertising is just one part of an SEO campaign and by itself, it will only get you so far. As great as pay per click is, it’s important to remember that when you stop funding your site’s ad campaigns the traffic will stop coming.  That’s why SEO is such a useful tool – it allows marketers to build up a good online reputation, and to capture ‘organic’ traffic and a wider range of keywords. PPC will target specific sites or specific searches while SEO targets a much bigger range because the search engines will look at the content on your site and decide what to match it with.

Both SEO and PPC, as well as general social media marketing, are required if you want to achieve long-term success. SEO will bring you longer term traffic even if, for some reason, you temporarily stop funding your ad campaigns. PPC, on the other hand, allows you to quickly target specific keywords, and to kickstart a campaign with a quick injection of traffic. You can use it to test new products or new slogans and get rapid feedback on how they will perform. You can also use it to jump on to current affairs or interesting news, and promote things on short notice.

If you have never tried PPC before, it makes sense to give it a go – you may be surprised at how effective it can be and how many people you can reach with it. For more information you can watch this Sheffield SEO Video

PPC gives you fine control over the location and demographic of the people you are marketing to – you can even target specific devices. This fine level of marketing is unprecedented, and something that marketers are only just getting used to – take advantage and see the power for yourself!

Jun 12 2016

The Top Five Marketing Mistakes that Businesses Make

Marketing is one of the most important things for every business and organization. Without marketing, it can be hard to grow and sell products and services. Many companies invest heavily in marketing because it helps in increasing visibility and strengthening the reputation. Marketing is an important department for many businesses, and they are always looking for new ways to improve the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns. There are some mistakes that businesses make when it comes to marketing, and sometimes it can cost them valuable business, and have adverse effects on their business. Below are some marketing mistakes that many companies make.

Not paying enough attention

The image you project regularly is what people will use to perceive your business. This is what many customers will use to judge whether they will be working with your business or not. This can happen both offline or online. Online marketing has made many companies fall into the pit of making typos and other grammatical errors that can be seen as detracting from the professionalism projected by the business sending a negative message.

If you are not able to project the best image for your business, what makes the potential clients believe that you will deliver on the products or services provided to them? This is why it is important to have an extra pair of eyes to go through the materials to ensure they have no errors before they are published or printed.

Failing to understands the needs of the customers

It is important to understand potential customers and what they want. You also need to know their problem and how what you are offering is going to help them solve it. Before creating any marketing plan, you will have to define your ideal client, what they need, and how you can provide a product that will be the best solution. The more details you know about your prospective customer, the more effective your marketing plan will be. Know what makes your customers choose your business, and you will be able to have a successful marketing plan.

Not staying true to the brand

The brand is the promise that a company makes to their customers and the customers can easily know when there is a disconnection between what they receive and what they were promised. If the marketing activities are different from the reputation and voice that has been established, you then have the risk of confusing, angering, or disappointing both your customers and your prospects. Make sure that your marketing plan stays true to the promises of the brand.

Lack of research and testing

Market research and testing is the most important thing for any business that is serious about marketing. Creating a marketing plan with no research can lead to losses because the efforts might not pay off in the end. Not having research and testing means you will be using guesswork on what your potential clients want. With research and testing, you may end up saving because you can easily know what works or doesnít.  It is always a good idea to invest in researching and marketing if you are looking to succeed.

Failing to capture repeat customers

Many businesses and companies sometimes make the mistake of focusing too much on new customers and neglecting repeat customers. When marketing, always know that 80% of their business will come from repeat customers and the remaining from new customers. If you donít find a way to resell to your current customers, you will lose out on profits you would have easily gotten. This also shows you it costs you four times to sell to your current customers than to a new customer.

May 28 2016

Learn 5 Ways To Turn Your Blog Into A Business

If you have a particular topic, subject, or niche that you are personally passionate about, then chances are you blog about it online, or have thought about doing so. Even if you enjoy writing and posting about the subject, why not make some money for doing something you love? Learn 5 ways to turn your blog into a business.

1) Get paid for product placements or endorsements. Some celebrities can make hundreds of thousands of dollars for just tweeting that they personally use a particular product or are having dinner at a particular restaurant or club. If your blog has a steady, serious following, you can start cashing in on your popularity by endorsing particular products.

2) Put up affiliate banner ads. This is somewhat similar to doing product placement and promotion, except that you don’t have to actually endorse anything, keeping your blog objective and neutral. A video game blog might link to titles recently reviewed that are for sale on Amazon or eBay. A blog about the NBA might link to ticket resale sites. Any reader clicking on an affiliate link banner on your site that actually spends a little money winds up sending a percentage of their spending your way.

3) Make your blog a subscription affair. This is something a lot of bloggers try, but few succeed at, so think hard before trying it yourself. If you have a one of a kind voice or point of view, or you offer words and writing that no one else can deliver on your particular blog’s subject, then go for it. If your readers can just turn to a search engine and find similar content for free somewhere else, shy away from this model.

4) Roll out your own brand and merchandise. If your blog is more than a blog and has become its own website and even an Internet destination, then consider opening a store with only branded materials in it. Mousepads, t-shirts, mugs, plushies, bumper stickers: there’s a million things that you can offer with your slogans, imagery and logo that don’t even get made or printed until a customer orders them, meaning you have no physical overhead.

5) Sell ad banners. This is the typical method of revenue generation for a blog, and also among the most reliable methods out there. Fortunately, it can be combined with other methods, although if you do use a subscription method, readers might not want too many ads if any. If your follower base runs from the thousands to the millions, it’s a good chance there’s an advertiser or two with items relevant to your subject material that want to sell to your readers.

Now that you know 5 ways to make money off of a blog consider how you can monetize one you’re already doing regularly, as well as what kind of blog you should consider starting if you’re not doing one already. It can take months of writing posts, along with search engine optimization, before any blog might see the first penny, but sales can be steady for those that stick with it.

May 25 2016

Black Circus News is Alive!

Hello and the very warmest of welcomes to Black Circus News!

This is just a quick welcome post so we’ll keep it nice and short and introduce ourselves. We are a husband and wife team who wanted a little space on the interweb where we can post articles and information we find that is interesting, informative or just great in general. So really this is going to be quite a mish mash of stuff, but either way we hope that if you find us, you’ll find some little tidbits or gold nuggets of info that you enjoy. So have a browse around and let us know what you think. To give you a taster, we love all things business, Google, arts, books, cooking, marketing and weird science… in fact there’s not much we’re not interested in! All the best and happy reading! Oh, and before we go, we might as well kick things off with this video that we found, which is all about life on mars!