Hey …

Email Marketing 101

How’s that for a headline?

If you saw the news out of the Obama camp yesterday, “Hey” was the most successful email subject line of a very data-driven and oddly personal email campaign for fundraising. By all accounts (especially election results), Obama’s digital strategy was a wild success.

So, I decided to try that headline with this post. I’ll be able to easily see how it does based on email open rates and traffic levels, plus other metrics like social sharing and commenting.

And, despite violating every bit of headline and subject line advice we’ve ever given you, it just might work. The reason why may surprise you, though.

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6 Tips for Beating the Blank Page

Image of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Book Cover

I visited the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre a few weeks ago. (Dahl is, of course, the author of dozens of brilliant books for young people, including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.)

I expected to spend the afternoon learning more about his stories, the inspiration for his characters.

But something else happened that I didn’t expect.

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Is it Time for Content Marketers to Abandon Facebook?

image of Batman and Robin

If you spend time on Facebook, you’ve seen a great weeping and gnashing of teeth as Pages realize that they’re only reaching a tiny sliver of their audiences with each post.

Facebook’s noisy, overvalued IPO means they need a better revenue model. Page owners are being strong-armed encouraged to pay to “Promote” posts to get a wider reach to the audiences they built in the first place.

For a business with a really large Facebook audience, this can run into tens of thousands of dollars a year.

Does this suck? Yes, it sucks.

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Digital Sharecropping: The Most Dangerous Threat to Your Online Marketing

Image of Pirate Flag

We have a great bookstore in my town — the kind of place you picture in your mind when you think of a great independent bookshop.

It’s perfect for browsing, with lots of comfy chairs to relax in. The books are displayed enticingly. There’s a little coffee shop so you can relax with an espresso. They get your favorite writers to come in for readings, so there’s always a sense of event and excitement.

They do everything right, and they’ve always had plenty of customers.

But they still closed their doors last year.

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5 Ways an Introvert Can Build a Thriving Online Audience

Image of a Shy Girl in a Hat

Do you often find yourself intensely focused on the things that interest you? Do you enjoy solitude and quiet?

Do you prefer deep conversations over loud parties? Do crowds drain you? Does alone time energize you?

If so, chances are you’re an introvert.

Either you’re giving a knowing nod or you’re confused because you thought introversion meant you were merely shy.

And maybe you’ve despaired that that introversion and “shyness” have held you back from achieving your business goals online?

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What Friedrich Nietzsche Can Teach You About Using WordPress Plugins

Image of Friedrich Nietzsche Thinking About WordPress Plugins

“Our greatest strengths can also be our greatest weaknesses.”

Have you heard/read this quote?

Curious about it, I spent some time searching online for its author. After painstakingly sifting through a morass of websites — and remembering that the web’s greatest strength (so much information!) can also be its greatest weakness (so much information!) — I finally settled on a surprising answer:

No one said it. The closest thing I could find that’s attributed to a single person, is the following line from Friedrich Nietzsche:

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