Fundraising Music Events

WordPress – Search Engine Optimisation beyond Yoast plug-in

I recently joined a friendly and interesting WordPress networking meetup group in Dublin organised by Marcin Kilarski, Rodolfo Melogli and Amit Wadhwa.

The presentation was given by Peter Lawless, sales and marketing expert, coach, mentor, trainer, TV & Radio presenter and published author. He is also a business founder.

It was followed by a Q & A by a panel of WordPress experts with Amit Wadhwa (Founder, Lead developer at xava.ie), Rodolfo Melogli (WooCommerce expert at businessbloomer.com), Peter Lawless (Search Engine Optimisation and Marketer at 3r.ie).

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In summary, the meetup topics were as follow:

• Is WordPress without SEO like a Shop in the middle of a Forest?

• Is an SEO Plugin, such as Yoast the answer to all your problems?

• How to Set SEO Titles in Just Two Steps

• The 3 Cardinal Sins of Black Hat SEO

• 5 SEO DIY Tips beyond Yoast

• “If you had just 15 minutes to SEO a website, how would you spend them?”

• The Financial Case to Hiring an SEO expert – (Our Secret SEO ROI Calculator).

Please find the presentation below and some additional information based on this slideshow (you can pause it to read) and the Q&A with the experts’ panel:

 

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When Peter says ‘think like a customer‘, he means that you should use simple everyday language to write/talk to people. He gave an example of the ‘Green eggs and ham’ children book written by Dr Seuss, which is using 50 words or less. In other terms, do not use over-complicated and sophisticated terms such as ‘refrain from..’.

What are ‘meta tags’? Meta tags are used in HTML and XHTML documents to provide structured metadata about a Web page. Meta elements can be used to specify page description, keywords and any other metadata. For more information on how meta tags can impact SEO, have a read of this article:

http://www.wordstream.com/meta-tags

Choose wisely your categories in your articles to reflect the content of your posts.

When talking about the 5 Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) DIY tips, he reminded us that we had to give something of value to people such as free information to get them interested in our products or services. For those who work as event organisers, you need to act as a go-to-place like Trip Advisor by helping people looking for your service.

As regard to the call to action, make sure it’s available on every page. The call to action on the home page shouldn’t be a sales one, but instead a form to fill in and provide contact information. Ensure you clearly explain to your customers what you want them to do and why.

When you start writing, podcasting, filming…, always remember that the content matters the most. So think content first and SEO second. Remember about cultural differences in terms of languages (eg different slangs in the UK, US and IE), as thinking about the customer language helps to get people to convert more easily. You can also link your .com website to your other sites. Before you start, ask yourself the following questions, in other terms find your niche:

What is the main goal for my blog? What are people looking for and interested in? What are the best things you like about my service? 

Then, follow these steps:

  1. Create content suitable to your audience (long for Business to Business and short for Business to Customer, complex topics mean generally longer content)
  2. Ask customers if they want to buy
  3. Collect addresses.

Pay attention to the design of your site by UX testing. For example, avoid heavy high-resolution pictures, too detailed pictures as it’s not telling the story and it’s also adding loading time to your website. When designing your website, think about the customer journey that goes through the following stages: excitement, knowledge and learning.

You also have the option to use advertising to boost the visibility of your blog or website but this should only be a cheap and short-time solution. If you go down that route, you can kick off an Adword campaign for 3-6 months to get traffic and do some split tests meta description/title. The most clicked on ads should become your headlines. Do not ever pay someone to be linked to someone else’s website/blog!

Another better option, though, would be to go through affiliate marketing as it’s far more valuable than advertising.

Nonetheless, SEO is your best bet for a more long-term strategy. For a better SEO optimisation, use a long-tail description with minimum 3-4 words. You can also boost your visibility through a joint press release for example.

When you set up your Google Business account and blog/site, make sure your contact details are consistent through all 3rd party websites: name, address, phone number. Add a picture that google will link on google map. You must have as well a table of content  (map.xml) with no duplicated content and put appropriate tags on the site map. Otherwise, you’ll have to have a good navigation menu.

When you monitor your traffic, you can monitor your clicks and check your google ranking with Alexa, Google  Search Console, SimilarWeb (similarweb.com)

Finally, you can calculate how much your SEO is worth with this tool:

http://www.3r.ie/website-success-calculator/

Do you have any questions? Any tips you’d like to add to this? Let me know by leaving a comment below!

Fundraising Music Events

How to podcast for musicians

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What is podcasting?

Podcasts are episodic series of digital audio files which users can subscribe to much like you subscribe to blogs. In fact often podcasts are distributed through a blog. You can either instruct your reader to download new podcasts whenever they become available or manually choose which podcasts you want to download by clicking a link to the audio file. These files can then be listened to on your computer or you can transfer them to your portable player (Ipod, smartphone or Iphone) to listen to later.

Why musicians should podcast? 

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The music industry is getting tougher and music CDs don’t sell as much as they used to or won’t sell without some prior promotion. Musicians may struggle not only to promote their music but also to make profits from it. Of course, one of the ways to generate revenue is to organise concert tours. But how can musicians spread the word about their music?

You’ll all heard that online promoting is a great way to reach your audience but how can you make them want to listen to you more or buy from you? Where can you start?

In our digital area, it’s not only important to share your music on your social media accounts, naming Facebook, Twitter, Soundcloud, Youtube but how can you get people to pay a fee to access to your music?

Don’t overdo with putting all your videos or soundtracks on Youtube or Soundcloud! Indeed, short teasers should be enough to attract your audience! Instead, what about investing time into podcasting? But how can you generate both interest and revenue from it?

Here are few ways you can do so as an independent artist:

http://www.feedforall.com/musicians-should-podcast.htm

But why podcasting can be a better format than other online promotional formats? 

what_is_podcasting

Podcasting allows you to have a more intimate relationship with your audience and can easily mimic or replace radio broadcasting. Podcasts are Portable On Demand media, that is to say, that they are portable and accessible on-demand for your listeners or watchers. Your podcasts can be subscribed to, paid for to access them and downloaded through various programs and devices.

However, do bear in mind that there are limitations you need to be aware of when podcasting!

Indeed, you will need to remember not to copyright any other artists’ work. For that, you may learn a bit the basic copyrights legal requirements to follow:

https://create.blubrry.com/manual/about-podcasting/legal-issues/

Now want to get started with podcasting?

podcast equipment

Remember to be correctly equipped!

Here are few must-haves to get you started:

This guide will help you get started with basics if you are new to podcasting and are on a low budget!

https://www.thepodcasthost.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/How-to-Podcast-The-Podcast-Host.pdf

 

MusicMarketing

But keep in mind that you will need to work on few marketing techniques in order to increase the visibility of your podcasts! Daniel J. Lewis, podcasting industry expert can help you launch and improve your own podcasts (note he isn’t affiliated with Audacity). Have a read at his podcasting tips:

https://theaudacitytopodcast.com/does-seo-really-matter-in-podcasting-tap179/

Finally, do you want to follow musicians’ DIY podcast?

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Look no further! CD Baby has compiled for you a list of different pod-casters giving you tips on how to use podcasts to promote your music and generate revenue from it!

http://cdbabypodcast.com/

Let me know if you have further questions? I’ll be happy to look for the answers for you!