We’re Moving!

Gloria Rand 2013 logoAll good things must come to an end, they say. So it is for this blog. But it’s not really an ending. It’s actually a new beginning.

From now on, you’ll be able to read my articles about SEO and social media marketing right from my website at gloriarand.com/blog. I’ve changed hosting companies, and launched a new website on the WordPress platform.

You can read my latest article there: 9 Reasons to Attend Social Media Summit 2013.

I hope you enjoy the new format!

Gloria Rand


How to Export Your Facebook Message History

I recently had an opportunity to record a series of videos for eHow.com on a variety of topics related to social media. In this video, you can learn how to export your Facebook message history.

For some reason, I can’t embed the video on my blog, so you’ll have to click the image to watch the video, or click this link: http://www.ehow.com/video_12247451_export-facebook-message-history.html
Continue reading


How to Attract New Business with Facebook – Webinar

[tweetmeme] Are you unsure about whether to use Facebook for your business? A new six-country survey from DDB should help convince you that it’s time to hop on this social networking bandwagon. The survey found that Facebook users who like a brand’s page use its products regularly or occasionally, and more than a third “want to buy this brand’s product more.”

If you’d like to know how to go about getting started on Facebook, watch this video for some valuable information. Or you can read all about it by scrolling down below.

It used to be that you had to be on Google to get noticed. But with more than 500 million people using Facebook now – it’s time to change that strategy. In the United States alone, there are 128 million Facebook users between the ages of 18 and 64. Corporate giants like Pepsi and Disney are already cashing in. Why not you?

To learn how to Attract New Business with Facebook – join me for a FREE webinar on Tuesday, October 26, at noon (12 pm) Eastern Daylight Time.

I’ll share tips and strategies on how to set up a Facebook business page, how to get people to “like” your page, and how to engage those people so they become loyal followers of your company’s brand and new customers of your product or service.

I’ll also share with you some time-saving tools that will allow you to manage your Facebook page more effectively while continuing to build your business.

Plus, there will be an opportunity at the end of the webinar for you to ask any questions. To reserve your seat, go to my website now at www.gloriarand.com where you’ll find the link to register.

Now, we only have 100 seats set aside. And as of the date this video was recorded, October 19, I already had 83 people signed up. And once those last 17 seats are gone, that’s it — they’re gone. There won’t be any more room.

Visit gloriarand.com to register or you can access the registration link directly here.



All “SEO” Problems are Small Stuff

How quickly a day can change…

Monday morning I landed a new client who didn’t blink when I told her how much her website project might cost, and wrote me a check right then and there as a down payment!

Flying high on her confidence in my writing and optimizing skills, I came home from the meeting, sat down at my computer, and started work updating another clients’ website with the new copy I had written for their home page.

I made the first few changes and then checked to see that everything looked ok.

Much to my surprise, everything was NOT ok.  In fact, it was terribly wrong!

The graphics weren’t loading right.  There were boxes on the right that should be on the left.  Images were missing.  Copy was missing.  What the heck had happened?

I rechecked my work. The code looked fine. I double checked their website to make sure it was still ok, and it was. I downloaded the code again, and looked at it with my Internet browser, but the home page was still a jumbled mess!

After an hour and a half of going nowhere, I called my clients’ web designer for advice. He suggested I use a different FTP program and HTML editor, which I did, but the results were the same – a messed up website!

Now, I never expected to deal with html code when I became a copywriter. I figured I’d write new copy, give it to my clients, and let their web designers implement the changes.  But I’ve found that most of my clients don’t want to deal with their web designers (for a variety of reasons), so I’ve made the changes to their sites myself.  I had to upload content to a business news website several years ago, so I was a little familiar with html code.  I’m also a quick study, so I didn’t think it would be that hard to handle…

Until now.

One of the first rules of business is to never over-promise what you can’t deliver. I felt terrible about not being able to upload the new home page to my client’s website. But I swallowed my pride and contacted my clients to explain what happened.  I told them I’d get together with their web designer the next day to figure out how to get their home page updated.

The next day, I logged onto SixMinutestoSuccess.com for a little video inspiration from Bob Proctor of “The Secret.”  The topic was “Don’t sweat the small stuff.  All problems are small stuff.”

Potent words.  So, I decided to heed his advice. I wouldn’t “sweat the small stuff” and instead, I’d find a solution.

I called up my client’s website online, looked at the source code, and compared it to the code I had downloaded.   I noticed right away that there were some extra lines of html code in the “bad” page, so I deleted them. This time, the site showed some improvement when I viewed it with my browser, but it still wasn’t perfect.

Since I hadn’t heard back from my clients’ web designer yet, I knew it was time to call in my own personal web consultant.  Don’t tell anyone this, but he’s my 14-year-old son. Hey – I may have a college degree, but I know when to call in an expert, and believe me, this teenager knows more about html code than I do!

After I explained what I’d done so far, my son had an inspiration. Instead of trying to figure out WHY the code was wrong, he just copied the “good” code from the website, and pasted it over my “bad” code.

Voila!  Problem Solved!

So what lessons can we learn from all this?

1)      Don’t be afraid to ask for help. (Even from your own son) and,

2)      Don’t sweat the small stuff.  Because all problems (even SEO ones) are small stuff!


Why Welcoming Visitors to Your Website May Drive Traffic Away Instead

Putting “Welcome to Smith & Jones Company” on your website may have worked when the Internet was new, but that strategy can cost you sales and search engine rankings today. There’s a better way to attract customers: write benefit-oriented content.

There are millions of websites competing for attention. People are too busy to spend a lot of time reading content. They want to know right away if your site is going to help them.

Instead of literally “welcoming” people to your site – get right to the point, with content that convinces a visitor to stick around, explore your site, and do business with you. Make sure you’ve got a headline that clearly communicates the benefits your product or service offers to a potential customer. You’ve only got about 3-5 seconds to make an impression. Use words that count!

Some companies still put “Welcome” in their title tags as well. This won’t help you with search engine optimization. In fact, it may do the opposite.

Search engines are looking for content. Your title tag should provide specific information about what your company does, with keywords people use to search for your business. And you only have a limited number of characters to get that point across. If your title is too long, the search engines cut it off and replace the extra words with an ellipsis. If you want to communicate more information about your business, use the description meta tag instead.

Welcoming visitors to your site may be polite, but it’s just not necessary. Use your precious title tag and landing page space for clear, concise, benefit-oriented copy. That’s the way to ensure good search engine rankings and higher conversion rates.


It Pays to be Persistent and…. Patient!

For anyone starting a business, landing that first client can be challenging, frustrating, and ultimately, rewarding.

It takes guts, persistence and, as I learned, patience.  Instant gratification is overrated.  It’s much better to wait for something.  Think back to your childhood. Waiting for Christmas morning to arrive.  The presents always seemed sweeter, if you had to wait for them.

So it is in business.  You may be impatient to get that first sale. I was… at first. But I also knew that all good things come to those who wait.  I decided to be patient, especially since my potential clients were a pair of awesome life coaches, who took a chance on a fledgling SEO copywriter.

I had finished the copywriting course and was half-way through the SEO copywriting course when Jennifer Lee and Leah Turner of Creating Your Masterpiece came into my life.  They came to speak at a meeting of Mothers and More, a non-profit support group I belong to.  They talked about the importance of setting goals and taking action. The message came through loud and clear to me.

The next morning, I decided to put into practice what I had learned so far about SEO and checked their website to see if it was optimized.  It wasn’t.  They needed help. I swallowed my nerves and sent an email thanking them for the great presentation.  I explained that I was starting my own freelance business as an SEO copywriter and could help get their website to move higher up the search engine ranks.

Leah and Jen knew SEO was important; they just hadn’t had a chance to do anything about it yet.  I submitted a proposal to them, but they rejected it – saying it was too expensive.  I could have given up right then, but I knew they needed the help and I knew I could do the work. So, heeding the advice of other copywriters I’ve studied, including Heather Lloyd-Martin, Ed Gandia, etc., I offered to scale back the project for less money.

They agreed, but couldn’t commit right then because taxes were due, etc. The coaches encouraged me to stay in touch, because they wanted to get their site optimized.  I emailed them periodically and sent them a sample of my work to show what I could do for their site.  That did the trick, because two months later, they agreed to my original proposal for the full amount!

FYI – I’m currently putting the final touches on a new revision of Creating Your Masterpiece’s home page since they have changed the focus of their business and are updating their site. It should be uploaded soon. Watch for it! www.creatingyourmasterpiece.com

July 26 update – I uploaded the new home page  today. It was a long time coming, but I think the results are well worth it.