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Wednesday, 7 August 2019

6 Steps to Becoming an Influencer in Your Industry


The way purchasing decisions are being made has changed since the age of social media and Influencer Marketing has skyrocketed since it first made its mark. The behavior of today's customers have shifted from sales presentations to collective recommendations from honest and credible people who have had an experience with the product.

"These qualities represent more of a trust in peers as compared with industry experts. And today, these are being transpired by influencers on social media."


Now with technology being easily accessible by every modern consumer, the landscape for sales and marketing is evolving.

Influencer marketing is important, however being an influencer in your own field is pure gold. Do not confuse being an influencer to being a celebrity. Influencers are not celebrities, they represent a group of ordinary people who have earned a loyal following because of either their expertise and/or transparency. While celebrities actively endorse products or services, influencers share valuable information with their followers.

The shorter strategy would be to advertise through influencers, however being your own social media influencer has great upside potential for you.

In this post, we will explore the necessary steps for you to become a social media influencer.

What are the steps you should take to become an influencer on social media in your industry?


Step 1: Find your niche


First, decide on a specific niche where you want to be known. This can be challenging as there are many topics that can be covered, but it is important to only focus on a specific niche. Normally, what sets different influencers apart is the tendency for an influencer to be known on a particular niche within the industry that they are truly passionate about.

To narrow down your topic of influence you can ask yourself what are the challenges your ideal reader faces and how you can help by sharing more on the topic to help solve and address this.

Step 2: Break the status quo


Commonly most people reason based on what happened in the past, what was successfully done, or what something no one else is doing. The evidence for this is everywhere. All you have to do is take notice of any particular industry, they are doing nearly the same thing, talking about the same topics, and even using similar formats when it comes to publishing and promoting their content.

Alternatively, you could break the status quo by following Elon Musk's thinking process instead. This forcefully makes you disregard the status quo, the main objective of doing this. As mentioned you want to set yourself apart from other celebrities and especially influencers in your niche.

Stand out with new and fresh information for your target audience.

Step 3: Choose your channel


Social media comes in different forms and delivery. For example, YouTube allows you to share video, Instagram is a great place to share photos, LinkedIn keeps you connected professionally, and more.

Although every channel has varying statistics on performance, (click-through-rates, reach, engagement, etc.) having the best statistically performing social channel may not be right for your target audience.

Your ideal audience may spend most of their time researching through blogs (learn how you can start online with web hosting here), learning about latest trends and events through Instagram, and following a walkthrough on YouTube. Knowing where your ideal audience is in the stages of their consumer behavior will help you position your valuable information.

Step 4: Develop your content strategy


As you know influencers may not be celebrities, and what sets them apart is their intent to share valuable information with their followers.

There are many effective suggestions on content strategy, however what we've found is giving a balance of informative and personal content is effective in developing a successful content strategy.

Here is a great read on how to become a great content creator.

Step 5: Distribute your content


Your content is only as good as how many people it has helped. If you are not getting people to see it and engage with it, it is not exactly useful.

It's just as critical to know how to distribute your content, as developing great content. Here's a great way to learn how you can make your social sharing explode.

Post snippets of your content on Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, etc. and customise your message depending on the social media channel you are interacting with.

A great place to share this is through LinkedIn as you continue to be a thought leader.

Step 6: Be consistent


This doesn't just apply to when your followers leave a question or comment on your posts, take the time to acknowledge and respond to them.

A major factor on most platforms is consistency. Quality does matter but you need to ensure that you deliver quality on a consistent basis. If you don't online platforms will assume your low engagement is a sign of a lack of relevance.

What are you doing to be an influencer in your industry?



Wednesday, 17 July 2019

6 Steps To Transform Your Sales Organization to be Best-in-Class


Best-in-class sales organizations use a consultative sales process. A sales process is consultative when the stages and actions align with the customer’s buying experience and customer relationship.

A typical consultative sales process is made up of 6 steps. Each stage maps out winning behaviors and strategies.

In this article we will discover the key 6 Steps of the consultative sales process.


Each stage should define the objective, best practice activities, tools, models, and customer actions that signal readiness to advance to the next stage (for example, the customer agrees to a meeting in stage one or provides access to the executive buyer in stage two).

"Hidden tip: Make sure there is a list of coaching questions related to each stage."


Step 1: Target + Qualify


The customer becomes aware of a business problem. Alternatively, the salesperson creates a pre-stage one opportunity by introducing an idea or challenge that is not yet on a customer’s agenda, or raises the visibility of an issue the customer has underestimated.

Step 2: Explore + Assess


Customers assess how much of a priority the issue is, determine their options, and develop decision criteria and decision process. Salespeople can help their prospects by sending them how-to blog posts, offering to run a consultative call, and sending them relevant content resources.

Step 3: Develop Solution


Customers research, compare solutions, narrow down choices, and refine decision criteria. The salesperson must differentiate, focus on business outcomes, and prove value.

Step 4: Present + Follow up


Knowledgeable customers make their selection and negotiate. Skilled salespeople will have already involved procurement prior to this stage. You should already know what steps need to be taken for your prospect's organization to buy a new product or service. That knowledge is crucial for presenting a solution with a realistic timeline.

Step 5: Negotiate + Close


Customers make the purchase. Salespeople support implementation and follow-up. When a close is imminent, it's more important than ever to make sure your prospect feels supported.

Step 6: Implement


Customers are in an evaluation mode. In the post-purchase stage, customers implement, measure outcomes, and evaluate performance against the sales promise. They decide on the future of the relationship. Salespeople must discuss results, prove value, and build on the rapport they previously created.

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Deliver 1st class value to your customers.


Discover how we maintain a unique position in our industry that only focus its resources and technical expertises in making the complex internet and messaging platforms are unified, managed, and monitored by a team of 24/7 messaging specialists.

EVERWORKS™ Solutions have successfully assisted, implemented and provided excellent service to prominent clients such as Ministry of Health, Ministry of Information, Communication and Culture, Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM), Media Prima Berhad (included TV3, 8TV, HotFM and FlyFM), OSK Berhad, CIMB Bank, AMBank, Hong Leong Bank Berhad, Institute Jantung Negara (IJN), PriceWaterhouse Coopers Malaysia, LIMKOKWING University, GAC Shipping, KLIA Express, AP Land Berhad, City & Guilds, Noritsu and many others.

Learn more

What have you done to transform your sales organization to be best-in-class?

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

5 Easy Tactics to Solve the 502 Bad Gateway Error


There are 5 common and effective solutions for analyzing and fixing most of the causes of 502 Bad Gateway Errors. The tactics discussed below provide general fixes for 502 Bad Gateway Errors.

To guide you through the hassle of fixing the dreaded 502 Bad Gateway Error, let's go over what it is, the common causes and best ways to solve it.

What is a 502 Bad Gateway Error?


A 502 Bad Gateway Error is a general indicator that there's something wrong with a website's server communication. Since it's just a generic error, it doesn't actually tell you the website's exact issue. When this happens, your website will serve an error web page to your site's visitors.

We'll cover below the 5 common and effective solutions for analyzing and fixing most of the causes of 502 Bad Gateway Errors.


1. Clear your browser cache


Sometimes server connectivity issues are resolved relatively quickly. Before you dive deep into what's causing the problem, take steps to insure that this is actually a major error and not just a blip.

Wait a minute or two. Then reload the page. If the page loads with no error, this might've been a temporary connection problem.

If the page is still giving you an error, clear your browser cache and then try refreshing it once more.

2. Look for connectivity issues


Most websites live on multiple servers or third-party hosting providers. If your server is down for maintenance or any other reason, your website could serve visitors a 502 Bad Gateway Error page.

The only way to troubleshoot this issue is to wait for your server to finish maintenance or fix the problem causing the error.

If you don't want to contact your hosting service, one quick way to make this determination could involve running a ping test to see if messages are reaching your IP. If that doesn't work, move on to investigating the error.

3. Contact your hosting provider


If you can't figure out the problem on your own, or if you think your host company is the culprit, give them a call. They may be able to look deeper into what's going on and shed some light on the situation.

If the issue is on their end, they might be able to easily fix it. If the problem is something related to your website specifically, they might also be able to walk you through the solution.

4. Check your DNS changes


If you've recently changed host servers or moved your website to a different IP address, it'll make changes to your website's DNS server. This could cause your website to serve its visitors a 502 Bad Gateway Error page.

Your website won't run until these DNS changes take full effect, which commonly can take up to a few hours.

5. Go through your server logs


Server logs will provide details about your server's health and status. Sift through them to uncover and respond to any alarming information.

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Cut through the technical requirements of managing your website


Discover how we maintain a unique position in our industry that only focus its resources and technical expertises in making the complex internet and messaging platforms are unified, managed, and monitored by a team of 24/7 messaging specialists.

EVERWORKS™ Solutions have successfully assisted, implemented and provided excellent service to prominent clients such as Ministry of Health, Ministry of Information, Communication and Culture, Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM), Media Prima Berhad (included TV3, 8TV, HotFM and FlyFM), OSK Berhad, CIMB Bank, AMBank, Hong Leong Bank Berhad, Institute Jantung Negara (IJN), PriceWaterhouse Coopers Malaysia, LIMKOKWING University, GAC Shipping, KLIA Express, AP Land Berhad, City & Guilds, Noritsu and many others.

Learn more

What's the most common issue to your 502 Bad Gateway Error?

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

5 Ideas to Help Deliver Better Customer Service in Malaysia


AI is replacing processing jobs and is a bleak future for those who are not embracing technology in their business. However, there is a key differentiation that can be implemented in business which is, through customer service. Customer service is a key differentiating factor for any business as it is essentially the act of helping customers, both reactively and proactively.

In this article, we'll be discussing about 10 things to implement to blow your customer service out of the park.


The customer service team ensures a customer's needs is fulfilled. The key here is not just to must troubleshoot support calls, answer customer inquiries, and perform a variety of tasks to keep customers engaged and satisfied, but also to ensure that these tasks are carried out with a personal touch.

For small business owners this can be overwhelming. With all of these functions performing at once, it can be difficult to stay in touch with everything your customer service team does.

This can be worrying to, because Customer Service is a vital component to your company's success. It represents your front facing "first impression" to the world.

There is a key challenge: it's difficult to outline everything you should be doing for your customers. However if solved, could unearth a hidden gem that could make your business explode.


To help small businesses, we cover below the 10 things you could implement for your customer service team to ensure that you are delivering the best possible service.

1. Build a customer success program


To capitalize on customer success, you need an organized program. Customer success programs identify customer goals and develop roadmaps to help customers achieve them. It's more likely for a customer to return your business when they succeed with your product or service.

2. Build customer loyalty programs


It costs five to 25 times more to acquire a new customer. Do more to retain your existing customers it's cheaper.

One way to do this is through customer loyalty programs. It's known that customer loyalty programs improve customer retention and increase referrals.

This is common and popular practice because your loyal customers usually spend the most at your business, and already represent the group of people that have already converted.

Getting them to convert again would cause less friction compared to someone who has just started the customer journey with your business. Here's a great read on 10 excellent innovative customer loyalty programs for your inspiration.

3. Collect customer feedback


Do not underestimate the power of collecting customer feedback. Collecting customer feedback is an important step in helping customers.

After all, it's hard to assist people if you don't know what their problems are. And, if you make changes based solely on the business's perspective, you can end up frustrating your customers and increasing your churn rate. Instead, look for timely opportunities to obtain customer feedback, and apply that information to your decision-making going forward.

4. Incorporate live chat


Live chat is a powerful tool that should be added to every customer service team's arsenal. Live chat is a hybrid, allowing reps to efficiently handle a higher case volume. Link customers directly to your knowledge base for quicker solutions.

This creates a better customer experience and reduces the wait stress for customers. Consider this option with caution, as high volume businesses need manpower to carry this out successfully.

5. Add a knowledge base to your website


A knowledge base is used to educate customers on your products and services. It contains support and service articles outlining steps to solve common customer roadblocks. A common way how most companies are approaching their customer service is to provide their customers with an instant location to solve their problems quickly by themselves.

This is especially useful when customers have an inquiry. Customers have the ability to search through the knowledge base to find a solution to their problem. This saves them time and in turn helps to ease the burden for your customer support team. Your customer support team would be focused on solving more complex problems, or to attend to customers which require more attention.

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Discover how we maintain a unique position in our industry that only focus its resources and technical expertises in making the complex internet and messaging platforms are unified, managed, and monitored by a team of 24/7 messaging specialists.

EVERWORKS™ Solutions have successfully assisted, implemented and provided excellent service to prominent clients such as Ministry of Health, Ministry of Information, Communication and Culture, Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM), Media Prima Berhad (included TV3, 8TV, HotFM and FlyFM), OSK Berhad, CIMB Bank, AMBank, Hong Leong Bank Berhad, Institute Jantung Negara (IJN), PriceWaterhouse Coopers Malaysia, LIMKOKWING University, GAC Shipping, KLIA Express, AP Land Berhad, City & Guilds, Noritsu and many others.

Learn more

What's your business currently doing to ensure the best service is being delivered to your customers?

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

8 Common Mistakes Your Boss Expects You To Know About SEO


Imagine today you have instant access to tools on SEO that would put you in good stead with your boss. How much would you pay for it?

Well.. today you pay nothing for it.

In this article I am going to show you what are the 8 common mistakes that will help you dominate your SEO game.

To start all you need is an open mind, and the will to implement these changes. These tips are not technical, and can be followed through by anyone (even the layman).

What is SEO? SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which is the practice of increasing the quality and frequency of organic visits from a search engine.

It goes without saying that SEO is extremely important for any successful inbound lead generation campaign, and it is only logical that it should be approached with some best practices put in place.

SEO changes, and the history of the world's largest search engine Google speaks for itself. There are various factors which affect your website to be found through search.

This article works as a consolidated source which we have experimented on and find useful. 

1. Duplication


A common occurrence is when there is carbon copy content on your website in more than 1 page. It is having the content of about being duplicated in the corporate profile.

Having 2 of the same content on different domain extensions confuses the search engine. This means, the likelihood of your website being recommended on the 1st page on any search engine difficult.

2. Conflicting URLs


Clean up your links. Clean your URLs to show uniformity and structure, because a search engine will struggle to decipher the order of content on your website.

For example, avoid this:


  • https://www.everworks.com/dedicated-server/
  • https://www.everworks.com/Dedicated-Server/


For the more advanced you can read more about follow links from WordStream

3. Make your website mobile friendly


It has been widely covered that Google will rank websites which are mobile friendly higher compared to websites which aren't mobile friendly.

Google has a great tool here to test how mobile friendly your website is.

4. Sacrificing speed for looks


Speed is important and is a ranking factor on Google. Do not discount on hidden areas of your website which may contribute to your lack of speed. Less visitors, means that your website's speed affects your bottom line.

Here's a quick way for you to instantly improve your SEO.

5. Keyword stuffing


Do not stuff for keywords. Google has explicitly stated that this may affect your ranking on it's webpages.

According to Google, it's the act of loading a webpage with keywords or numbers in an attempt to manipulate a site's ranking in Google search results.

6. Buying links


There is a strong sentiment within the society about paid link-building, and it's strongly advised that this isn't recommended.

Link-building is a great way to build a strong SEO. Pay attention to the quality of back-links. Rubbish links greatly affects the reputation of your website.

For further reading, we recommend an article from Moz, which covers a great article here about why link-building is important.

7. Forgetting the 'Alt' tag


Although there isn't an emphasis on ALT tags, there is a great opportunity for your photos to appear on search.

This is an alternative source of visitors to your website could be the image search on a search engine.

For example, DSC_001142.jpg compared to "Panasonic-Microwave-Below-Market-Price.jpg".

8. No emphasis on content building


Here's a fantastic resource on all of Google's ranking factors here.

Don't forget, search engines have an objective to deliver relevant, up-to-date, and quality content to people who search.

Conclusion


Commit to a SEO strategy and have faith to do the right things. Over time, optimizing for SEO would do more good for your website than bad.

Although, you are optimising for your SEO, don't forget your readers. Make it an easy experience for them with the right spacing, text separation, font size, etc.

Secret tip: Remember to fix any broken pages (404 pages) with a 301 redirect. You'll thank us later.

What's stopping you from committing to a SEO improvement campaign?

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

The Unconventional Guide to Web Hosting


Guess how many people surf the Internet everyday?

Any ideas?

Google alone has 63,000 searches per second. That means 630,000 searches would have already been done, while you were reading these words.

Why should this matter to you? The increasing demand for the Internet - 4.39 billion users - creates opportunities on the web and in tandem the need to deliver these web solutions.

And, in all likelihood, you know web hosting helps you to deliver these web solutions. You are reading this guide to learn which option is best suited for you.

For those who are new, to deliver web solutions, web hosting is required. Simply, your web hosting acts as a storage place for your website, web application, and anything you need to deliver through the web.

There is a lot of confusion when it comes to web hosting because of the options available in the market.

In this guide, you will learn where web hosting differs, how to work around a fixed budget, and ultimately which web hosting option is best suited for you.

Below we will be digging deep into web hosting and to deal with the complexities to follow, systematically. Feel free to skim through to sections which interests you most.

Overview


Before choosing a web hosting option, you first need to know the 6 common options for web hosting you will commonly come across:

Shared hosting Web hosting you share with other users.
Virtual private server hosting (VPS hosting) Private web hosting, where you share the infrastructure with other users.
Dedicated server hosting Exclusive web hosting rented by you.
Cloud hosting Flexible web hosting allowing you to scale when required.
Managed hosting Web hosting which provides technical services such as hardware and software setup and configuration, maintenance, hardware replacement, technical support, patching, updating and monitoring.
Colocation hosting Space you can rent to fully manage your web hosting (hardware, software and services).

To systematically identify which option suits you best, we recommend a framework that you can use to analyze, prepare for, and narrow down almost any situation you may encounter.

To better understand our framework, we've simplified it into 3-steps.


Step 1: Distinguish your needs
Step 2: Narrow down your options (through elimination)
Step 3: Discover your true goal

Step 1: Distinguish your needs


To start, consider the following. What are your core needs?

An analysis of your needs is crucial, because it allows you to define what is the lowest acceptable service you would accept and your highest best option.

Consider the following questions you should be critically assessing:



  1. Is your business relatively new?
  2. Do you depend on the web solely / partially to carry out its business model?
  3. How much speed do you need? How can you determine the amount?
  4. How much space do you need? Will you need to push this in the near future?
  5. Would you require technical assistance?


Depending on how you assess the above questions, you can frame a needs profile that will form a sheet for you to compare which options to narrow to.

A great read on determining how much speed you need is covered by Jonathan at WhoIsHostingThis.

In summary, estimate the average page site using Pingdom's Load Time test, multiply this value by the average number of visitors, and multiply the result of this with the average number of page views per visitor.

Space largely depends on the nature of business you plan to carry out on the web. Hosting Manual has a great guide on space required here.

Step 2: Narrow down your options


Industry jargon:


  • Space = Amount of # GB HDD
  • Speed = Amount of # Mbps (also known as bandwidth)


Shared hosting► Great for new entrants to the worldwide web.
► If your business is relatively new, and only partially depends on the web to carry out your business model.
► There is not much need for space and speed can be at a minimal because of small number of page views.
Virtual private server hosting (VPS hosting)► The environment for this mimics a Dedicated Server, but shares the features of a Shared Hosting.
► What this means is, the Web Hosting is divided into virtual partitions, however, you still share the physical server with other users.
► Great, if you have been in business for some time and actively using but need more control.
► If you require technical assistance.
► Budget limits or just not willing to pay for the high price of a Dedicated Server Hosting.
Dedicated server hosting► For you if your business is very matured on the web.
► You expect / continue to see an increase in page views.
► You don't need technical assistance.
► Require full control.
► Enhanced security.
Cloud hosting► Great for you if you expect your business to scale in space and speed requirements in a short period of time.
► Pay only for what you need (some providers have a base package you can start from).
► You can scale without having to build and maintain your own computing infrastructure.
Managed hosting► Most web hosting options will likely be managed.
► You should always opt for this if you require technical services such as, hardware setup, software installations, maintenance, hardware replacements, technical support and more.
Colocation hosting► When you need a large amounts of speed at a lower cost.
► The major disadvantage is you will be left to your own devices (your web hosting is not managed).

Conclusion


The choice of which web hosting option relies on your current situation. This post has provided to you the required framework to choosing a suitable web host.

Where web hosting differs is, in the amount storage space, the level of control, requirements for technical assistance, speed, and reliability.

In the end, which web hosting option did you choose?

Wednesday, 12 June 2019

The Hidden Secret to Generating Leads for Beginners


Sales is often generalised as a single activity.

However, to fully understand sales and it's role to your business you must realise that sales isn't a single activity. It is a collection of steps your customer has to take before becoming a paying customer for your business.

This collection of steps is made easy to understand and explained through a Sales Process.


Before you begin with any stage of the Sales Process, I encourage you to find out your sales forecast in 2 steps here.

I've compiled below hidden secrets I wish I knew before I started my own business. It's because I only realised after 3 years, that a consistent flow of leads ensures that business is sustainable and continues to grow.

Below I will cover Stage 1 of the Sales Process.

Hidden Secrets for Beginners to Unlock the Leads Waterfall


Secret 1: Identify Your Target Audience - Learn Who Are Your Potential Customers.


‘Make a Customer, Not a Sale.’ ― Katherine Barchetti. When you rush to make a sale, you forget the person in front of you.

Listen and understand to the needs of your customers. Target your customers, and build your product with the best message to suit their needs.

Great reads and additional resources:





Secret 2: Choose a Promotional Method


After Step 1, you would have understood the preferences of your potential customer. You will need to ensure the benefits of your products are made known to your customers.

A great guide to create your detailed customer avatar here.

Secret 3: Use Social Media as Your Primary Tool


To start, I recommend advertising on Social Media, because you would save a great amount of advertising cost. A great guide I find useful is a LinkedIn marketing plan example covered by Suzanne here (although this is specifically for a financial advisor, I believe it would work for any other profession)

Secret 4: Don't Overlook Email


An alternative for customers which are not tech savvy, consider sending an email instead




Lead generation is a continuous process however, with an efficient system in place your business is primed for sustainable future growth.

So are you going to take action to experiment the 4 secrets above?