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Karri Flatla

Karri Flatla is a business graduate of the University of Lethbridge and principal of snap! virtual associates inc., a virtual consulting firm providing business communications and Internet marketing services to the progressive entrepreneur. Karri also produces Outsmart, the email newsletter for small business with big purpose. Visit http://www.snap-va.com for more information. Click to follow Karri on Twitter.

Web Copywriting Voodoo: The 8-Step Secret Copywriters Might Not Want You to Know

I might get in ca-ca for sharing this with the entire readership of Search Engine Guide, but it's time to reveal what I think a lot of web copywriters probably don't want you to know. Why? Because keeping you in the dark about how we crunch out great copy day after day keeps us in business. Or so one would think....

The 80-20 Rule Applies to Twitter ... So?

Convincing small business folk to get on board with social media is akin to asking a four-year-old to watch paint dry. It's nice to look at, for a few minutes, until boredom sets in and the child asks if he can go outside and play. Outside is where the action is. There's stuff to do. People to see. Places to go....

Twitter as Target Market Research Tool (and the Twitterization of Clayton Makepeace)

Clayton Makepeace recently revived an old copywriting post titled "8 Ways to Spot Dominant Emotions Your Prospects Already Have That Could Drive Your Response Rates Through the Roof." In that post, Makepeace explains uncomplicated yet effective methods for researching your target market. By the end of the post you realize there really is no excuse for leaving out this critical step. While the copywriting techniques outlined are indeed timeless, I'd like to "Twitterize" some of Makepeace's points for the social web....

Are You Fighting the Etailer Price War or Circumventing it?

According to the New York Times article Websites Wage Holiday Price Wars (Nov. 19, 2008), small and large etailers alike are facing some tough choices this holiday season. It would seem that in the end, everything really does come down to price. And if you're not willing to fight the good fight--or if your bottom line simply can't survive the battle--your ecommerce business is doomed. Or is it?

How to Grow Your Twitter Following (Even if You're Not a Marketer)

I'm not ready to talk about how Twitter has benefited me or my business yet--we have a complicated relationship. But I think it goes without saying that a lot of people (or should I say "peeps") would like to grow their Twitter following, and I think I've cracked the code. Whatever your social networking goals are, the following tactics will not only increase the number of people following you, but you will begin to experience that old fashioned thing called "community" right from your desktop....

In Blogging You Need Only Think Small to Get Big Results

When I started a blog on my website a few months ago I felt overwhelmed by the sudden responsibility to post fresh content often. It was as if the minute I created a section on my website called "Blog" I was inaugurated into a writer's hell where I felt both stumped and compelled to write all at the same time, all of the time. Then I realized that I was missing the point of blogging, which is to keep a lively conversation going (even if it's sometimes only between you and the WordPress Dashboard). And if you're a decent conversationalist,...

Bet You Didn't Know Micro Blogging Could Be This Simple

When I finally did get on the micro blogging bandwagon (and no, I don't count Facebook, not even the "new" one), I put my profile on pretty much all of the Twitter-ish sites I could find. Hey, why not? It's sort of like one of those drinking games where you do a bunch of different shooters in about half an hour, realize most of them just make you want to throw up and go back to your favourite beer the following Saturday....

SEO Bonus Night: Keyword Research Just Got a Little Bit Easier (and Cheaper)

Have you ever been walking down the street just sort of minding your own business, staring at the cracks in the sidewalk, when you suddenly spot a fiver just laying there on the pavement?  My fiver on the sidewalk of search engine marketing was NUMBERS. Yes, Google showed me numbers, glorious numbers. Not just the "1 through 4" types either. Big ones and little ones. Odd ones and even ones. It was neat. It wasn't Bob Barker calling my name or anything. But it was neat....

Small Website? Small Budget? Why Not a Little SEO Lite?

Is it just me or are SEOs getting a little big for their britches? Specifically, why do so many of them tell business owners that they must optimize their website for hundreds of keywords?...

Has the Internet Made a Believer Out of You? Maybe This Will Rock Your Religion

Let's get one thing straight: much as we like to play God, Internet marketers are not the omnipotent beings some people think we are. The Earthly truth is that we're just some really driven people with a lot of knowledge about working the web to your advantage. And most would agree that this knowledge, when put into action, is worth a few bucks. Of course, it's easier to continue believing in the omnipotent marketer. As in, if you pay someone enough money to market your business for you, then that person is accountable for your business' failure to turn a...

My Relationship with Facebook: Can We Talk?

I'm probably going to lose a lot of Friends with this post, but I need to get some stuff off my chest about Facebook. If you're a real Friend, you'll listen without judgment. If not, it was nice Facebooking with you. I hope there are no hard feelings left in my wake....

Twittering Our Way Toward Truth on the Social Web

I admit, I've been relatively slow to catch on to Twitter. At first it just seemed like a lot of background noise with no real purpose. Silly almost. Like, um, Facebook. Except with Twitter the discussion becomes more relevant as time goes on, not less. The conversations, even inane ones, retain a degree of rawness and truth, cluttered and disorganized as they may be....

Publishing Your Prices – the Sequel

Are we so accustomed to the vastness of modern media that we've forgotten consumers are always a click or two away from a zillion and one alternatives to our humble offerings? Today's consumer is on high alert for answers, answers, answers. There is little reason to gamble away time trying to get those answers out of you the seller when better answers—easier to find answers—are so tantalizingly available....

Get Over Yourself and Publish Your Prices Already

For some reason business owners forget that closing a deal means asking for the sale. Yet, how do you ask for a sum of cash that remains undisclosed to the prospect? Even if the goal of your site is to just elicit inquiries, an absence of critical information deters impatient users with pent up desire for some simple, honest information about the product or service they are looking for....

Making a List and Checking it Twice: Resolve to Get Your Business Mojo On

Unfortunately, most resolution lists read like a Martha-Meets-Oprah-Make-Your-Life-Really-Special instruction sheet. I’ve prepared a different kind of list, one that’s pure octane and 100% sugar free—with nary a saccharine euphemism in sight. The politically correct should step aside. The rest of you should strap yourself in and keep your mouth closed—there’s gonna be some dirt flying....

How Much Will it Cost to Get More Traffic to My Website?

A good marketer will evaluate your online venture holistically and then allocate finite resources to those tactics that will have the most impact toward an agreed upon end. Just know that the "end" does not suddenly arrive one day like a freight train roaring through your home office....

Niche Marketing and Keyword Selection: its Search Marketing Heaven

Anyone who says that niching will exclude too many potential buyers doesnt know why he is in business in the first place. Moreover, a prospect pool with no common reason to buy from you is a headache that will cost time, money, and more patience than your sanity can afford. Get over your desire to be popular with the whole wide world and instead choose a niche....

Five Ways to Write Web Copy That Sells

Most people loathe writing, cannot write, do not have time to write (well), or all of the above. Factor in things like SEO, usability, and the need to say a lot with a little, and you have a frustrated author with a shortage of clients. Fortunately, common sense rules on the Internet....

Think Strategically and Avoid the Search Engine Sweat

As a frequenter of online forums, I am concerned to see so many newbie entrepreneurs so dangerously invested in their Google rankings. While no one likes to watch their rankings drop like a stone from a top ten position, facing negative profits and the sleepless nights that follow thereafter is entirely unnecessary....

Why You Should Avoid the Top 10 Guarantee in SEO

While top ten rankings are a worthy goal, shelling out money to an SEO that makes such pie-in-sky claims will leave you frustrated and probably wishing you had spent your cash on something more useful, like snake oil....

To Market to Market: Why Content is King

Your website's content is a microcosm of all things marketing. Your content should be the heart and soul of your web-based business unit, even if that unit is part of a larger offline framework....