What makes a great YouTube custom thumbnail image? You want something that’s eye-catching, sure. If you’re using it as part of a marketing strategy, you also want something that’s cohesive and ties into your branding.
What makes a great YouTube custom thumbnail image? You want something that’s eye-catching, sure. If you’re using it as part of a marketing strategy, you also want something that’s cohesive and ties into your branding.
Watch “How to Get Started Outsourcing…” on YouTube
So if you have one little thing bugging you on your site and you want to get it fixed…but you’re not a programmer…where to you go to get that done? What if you want to find someone to build a site for you, but you want to get a bunch of bids to review for the best price? Or what if you want someone to do something else for you, like offer legal help or IT support? The answer is to outsource. Outsourcing is easy now with the help of sites like eLance.com, vworker.com and odesk.com.
Outsourcing online gives you access to literally a world of people that would love to help you. You get to review bids and portfolios, work history and ratings from other employers…and your money is totally safe. In this video, I talk about where to go to outsource and how to get started.
If you have a brand design that includes a logo, website and collateral that looks pretty good and you think should be bringing in new prospects or business, but it doesn’t seem to be doing much…you might wonder what’s wrong. If you look at your website, you might wonder if you should change some images, or the layout, or add different information…but if you’re not really sure what’s wrong, then how do you know where to start making changes?
If you think things look okay (and people are seeing your information) but it’s not doing much for your business, this video suggests another approach you can try. It’s not another “tactic” or new feature–it’s something less obvious, but more powerful: the tone and personality of your brand.
Why is the tone or “personality” of your brand important? Because it’s what gives it LIFE! It’s what adds character and distinction. It creates the opportunity for people to like your company, because you have a style that resonates with them.
This is why getting a nice-looking template to build your website only goes so far when it comes to converting leads into customers. A template, by it’s nature, is a tool that can be used to produce a result quickly. You need a website, you search for a cool template, you plug it in and Voilà! You have a website.
But a thousand other people can do the same thing, so your site can look like Joe Accountant’s website and John Mechanic’s website and Mary Bakery’s website. The chances of someone remembering you from all the other sites they see that look similar are very slim.
Even if your site doesn’t look “great” but it OWNS that particular style of not looking great–it’s going to stand out in people’s minds. It will resonate with the audience and STILL work better than a website that looks a lot like every other site you see. (Think of Craigslist.org or Wikipedia.org, for example.)
Tone and personality create likeability with an audience. Likeability builds rapport. Rapport generates leads.
[/vc_column_text][mk_padding_divider size=”60″][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][mk_image src=”https://techdivamedia.com/wp-content/uploads/mailchimp.jpg” image_size=”full” align=”center”][mk_fancy_title color=”#0a0a0a” font_weight=”400″ margin_top=”10″ margin_bottom=”0″ font_family=”Lato” font_type=”google”]Mailchimp knows how to have a playful, approachable tone to welcome people new to email marketing[/mk_fancy_title][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][mk_image src=”https://techdivamedia.com/wp-content/uploads/method-people-against-dirty.jpg” image_size=”full” align=”center”][mk_fancy_title color=”#0a0a0a” font_weight=”400″ margin_top=”10″ margin_bottom=”0″ font_family=”Lato” font_type=”google”]Method cleaning products convey a tone that looks fun, fresh and hip[/mk_fancy_title][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][mk_image src=”https://techdivamedia.com/wp-content/uploads/annie-lalla-annie-lalla.png” image_size=”full” align=”center”][mk_fancy_title color=”#0a0a0a” font_weight=”400″ margin_top=”10″ margin_bottom=”0″ font_family=”Lato” font_type=”google”]Love coach Annie Lalla’s bold, feminine aesthetic shine through to compliment her coaching philosophies[/mk_fancy_title][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][mk_padding_divider][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][mk_image src=”https://techdivamedia.com/wp-content/uploads/tech_diva_media_6.jpg” image_size=”full” align=”center”][mk_fancy_title color=”#0a0a0a” font_weight=”400″ margin_top=”10″ margin_bottom=”0″ font_family=”Lato” font_type=”google”]Dr. Dan Engle’s focus on brain injuries, holistic healing and a simplified wellness approach come through in his website style[/mk_fancy_title][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][mk_image src=”https://techdivamedia.com/wp-content/uploads/aubrey-marcus.jpg” image_size=”full” align=”center”][mk_fancy_title color=”#0a0a0a” font_weight=”400″ margin_top=”10″ margin_bottom=”0″ font_family=”Lato” font_type=”google”]Aubrey Marcus uses illustration and bold colors to convey his tone and attract his particular audience[/mk_fancy_title][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][mk_image src=”https://techdivamedia.com/wp-content/uploads/hermes.jpg” image_size=”full” align=”center”][mk_fancy_title color=”#0a0a0a” font_weight=”400″ margin_top=”10″ margin_bottom=”0″ font_family=”Lato” font_type=”google”]Hermès uses typography, specific wording, white space and imagery to carry the tone of the brand through all aspects of their presentation[/mk_fancy_title][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]
You know what?
You’re a genius.
No, really. I’m not trying to sell you anything, either. I’m being serious.
Did you ever consider that you have a unique genius or skillset that many others don’t have? What would it be like to bottle up your expertise and present it to others in a training program or course?
With the technology available at our fingertips today, doing something like that is easier than ever before.
– You might be like one of my clients and own a chain of independent grocery stores. You’ve learned a thing or two about how to use social media to bring more people into your stores. What if you created a series of videos from PowerPoint presentations where you explain to other store owners how to do the same thing? You could make an introductory course and market specifically to them, knowing that you understand them in a unique way.
– You might be really good at socializing. You have an abundance of close, genuinely caring friends and make new friends easily. Whether for business or pleasure, you feel confident walking into any room at any time knowing you’ll walk out with 10 new connections. Why not outline a program where you could teach people how to start conversations, what to do in awkward silences, how to ask questions, how to follow up and stay in touch, etc.? You could market it to graduating university students, looking for jobs. Or sales people that don’t understand why people get turned off. Or to people that deal with depression.
– Perhaps you’re awesome at making jokes. Being witty, cracking people up and having a quick, funny response in almost any moment is a gift you’ve had since childhood. This could be a 6-week comedy course where you meet people on a group call every week and explain strategies for creating jokes and being funny. This would be ideal for people that have to do public speaking, sales people, real estate agents, parents…
In this 10-minute video, I share 2 mind maps from a session with one of my coaching clients. I show you the strategy for creating and marketing you online program or course, plus have the 2 mind maps available for you to download for reference.
Watch “What You Need To Develop…” on the Tech Diva YouTube Channel
When I discover a video I like on YouTube, I usually want to know who’s behind it. Often I’ll click on the Channel name to see what else they have in their video library. This takes me to their YouTube Channel page, where I’ll see its channel art — the horizontal banner displayed across the top of the user’s YouTube channel. Ideally, this is well thought out and consistent with good design and clean branding.
A YouTube channel banner will be shown in different dimensions depending on the device where it is being viewed. For example, a banner might have different dimensions when viewed on a TV, desktop, or mobile device.
Google recommends these YouTube banner dimensions:
Recommended: 2560 x 1440 px
Minimum for upload: 2048 x 1152 px
Minimum “safe area” where text and logos are ensured not to be cut off: 1546 x 423 px
Maximum width: 2560 x 423 px
File size: 4MB or smaller
This can help you visualize how it will display depending on where it’s viewed:
So what makes a great banner? What do you put in it to make sure your channel looks unified, and your YouTube channel page overall is clean and professional?
Here are 3 examples of YouTube Channel Art banners with different types of content and audiences to give you ideas:
In the last two decades, we’ve watched society transform with the evolution of technology and access to information. Transportation, communication, commerce, food, business, education…every industry has evolved more rapidly than ever before.
A generation ago, words like “startup” or “solopreneur” weren’t even part of our vocabulary. The majority of entrepreneurs or small business owners were local businesses, often with brick-and-mortar locations. The rest of the workforce worked in jobs that often provided healthcare benefits, pension plans and steady employment for decades. People worked and planned for retirement, with two weeks of vacation days allotted each year.
If you launch a business now, you can apply and receive a business license, put up a website and get business cards printed in a day.
While it’s easier than ever to start a business, the number of small businesses that fail remains dismal: according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 20% fail in their first year, and about 50% of small businesses fail in their fifth year.
When it’s so quick and easy to start a business, when it’s no longer so expensive to manufacture prototypes to test ideas, when connecting with people is instantaneous, when you can learn anything whenever you want, wouldn’t you think people would have better success with business?
If time, money, connecting and education aren’t the problem, what else could it be?
I think the problem is that, even though things in the world around us are improving, something inside of us is not: our communication skills.
Communication, more than just speaking to one another, is defined as “the successful conveying or sharing of ideas and feelings.”
With so much communication happening around us in every moment, it seems to me that the amount of information that we receive, understand and respond to without distraction is decreasing.
If you’ve started a business in the last 10 or 15 years, you’ve no doubt been inspired by the opportunities to reach your market cheaper, faster and easier than ever before. But if you find yourself surprised that it hasn’t happened as easily as you thought, you’re not alone.
I’ve been working in online marketing since 2008, and have personally worked with hundreds of hopeful entrepreneurs ready to make it big by attracting customers through blogging, Google and Facebook ads, email newsletters, membership sites, social media, YouTube, etc. These are all viable strategies, and they continue to evolve with opportunities.
But, again, with these fantastic tools at your fingertips, none will do you any good if you aren’t great at communication.
The inspiring thing about this is that communication skills are something you can improve — without risk, and inexpensively! What have you got to lose by investing a couple months studying how to be a better communicator? It’s an opportunity with virtually no downside and exponential upsides.
What if you started by experimenting with new strategies for connecting with people for one week? And when you do connect, what if you tried a new approach to communicating?
For example, let’s say you’ve launched your own business and have grown enough that you’re overwhelmed. You need help. But maybe you can’t afford a local employee yet. Or maybe you aren’t comfortable hiring someone and becoming a boss. Maybe you’re not sure exactly what to have them do yet. So you keep doing it all yourself, knowing you’re at your limit but not being able to move past it.
Now you decide to take this as an experiment with improving communication skills, because you have nothing to lose. What if you listed a few basic tasks that you could outsource, and connected with a local college to find an intern to work with?
You could approach it as an opportunity for you both to learn from one another, gain experience and build a greater system as a result. Starting with a few hours a week, it could fit your budget and be easier to adjust to delegating. You could create a 3-month internship to start, taking the pressure off of both of you to be perfect. The intern’s enthusiasm and fresh ideas could inspire you, and you’d end up with expanded communication skills as you mentor them and organize your business tasks.
Let’s take another example. Let’s say you have a product or service that you think is valuable but you can’t seem to get traction finding new customers. You try Google and Facebook ads, you put up signs…nothing seems to bring in new business. But you know that once you talk with someone, you can interest them. How can you get the phone to ring?
You decide to experiment with improving your communication skills, because you have nothing to lose. What if you tried connecting with new people by starting a YouTube channel where you taught about your area of expertise? By sharing information, you’d attract people interested in your market. You could offer product reviews, suggestions and tips, tutorials, case studies, interviews with experts, etc. With the approach of offering education and value, you’d learn to share your product or service ideas in a new context. Your communication would be received differently than it would as a sales pitch from an ad.
In a world where connecting and doing business in the world outside of us is easier than ever before, perhaps the greatest opportunities lie in shifting what’s inside of us.
In the few moments it would take you to make a social media post for your business or order a new run of business cards, could you experiment with communicating in another way?
Could you mail a card with a clip of an intriguing article to a favorite client? Could you make a 60-second video on your phone asking a new prospect about their goals and how you could help them with it? Could you plan a small dinner party with two colleagues you think should meet each other?
Improving your communication skills is an investment with the potential for massive ROI — in your business and your life.
Maybe you’ve never hired a professional web or graphic designer before, or maybe you did and had a less-than-ideal experience. With your business perception and positioning at stake, you might be ready to hire someone new to help you.
The first things you might wonder are:
– where do you look to find someone good?
– what should you do to prepare?
– how long will it take?
– how much does something like this cost?
This video will answer these questions, or guide you on how to find those answers.
How do you know when you’re ready to hire a designer, though?
The best indicator is when you’re not 100% happy with your visual brand. This may be because:
• When you started awhile back, you didn’t have great design skills nor a budget, but you did well enough with something as a “placeholder.” You were going to update it, but never got around to it. Now your business needs a pro touch.
• You can afford to hire help with this, and you’re ready to hand it over to a pro that can collaborate with you but also guide the project.
• You didn’t really put much into creating your branding at first, and now that your business has grown, you know that tightening up the look and feel of everything will make you more competitive in your industry and set a new tone in your company.
• You’ve grown and changed and your current brand doesn’t showcase what your company offers now. It’s time for an update, and makes sense to hire a pro to help.
Watch now to get answers to:
What steps should you take before you hire a designer?
Where do you look for a designer?
How should you decide whom to work with when you have found a few options?
What makes a website “better” or more effective than another? I’ll explain with 2 web design examples from companies in the same industry. Specifically, I’ll focus on the first part of the homepage: the part “above the fold”. This is what people see before they scroll. Ideally, your website answers 3 questions in this area before people have to do anything:
1 what is this?
2 who is it for?
3 what’s unique, interesting or engaging (in other words, why would someone want to learn more and stay on your website)?
These two accounting firms offer the same thing, but it would be hard to tell that without really looking to find out what the one example site is even about.
How easy is it to leverage your knowledge and expand your business offerings by creating an online course for your audience?
1. You could create a series of video lessons (they don’t need to be super long, just super content) explaining some common misunderstandings about your industry sector, or common mistakes customers can avoid.
2. You could make a series of videos with each answering a common FAQ—and cut down on time wasted answering this repeatedly for new clients.
3. You could make a “beginner” course as a front-end offer, to help deter people that aren’t serious in investing in your product or service.
4. You could create an online curriculum for training new staff members.
5. You could offer it as a “bonus” for people that purchase your product or service.
This month I’m helping a music teacher leverage his time by creating beginner courses and an online community. With the tools available online today, it’s easier than ever to incorporate this to boost your credibility and value to those you serve.
For example, you can use platforms like Teachable or Thinkific to upload videos, documents and resources for your future students. It’s FREE to set up. (You pay a % of sales instead of a monthly payment for the basic plan.) They offer tracking and analytics, plus a user-friendly interface for people to go through your content.
By having an online course(s), you can leverage your time as well as enhance the value of your existing offers by making the course a “baby step” towards the larger investment.
The key is knowing how to break down your knowledge into bite-size, teachable chunks. This is often the hardest part for people: being able to teach. It’s one thing to know how to do something, and quite another to know how to teach it effectively. If you can explain it to a 10-year old, that’s a great barometer to gauge if you can make a clear, succinct course out of your information.
I’ve worked with several clients in the past 3 years, from consultants to small businesses, to turn their knowledge into digital products. I worked with Eben Pagan for 4+ years coaching people on how to do this. It takes some patience to map out your curriculum and then record yourself teaching…but the end result generally makes it worth the investment of time up front.
Biggest mistake, which turned into my biggest lesson was from the job that I wasn’t able to complete this year.
The client and I started working together, but amicably ended the project before completing the design phase. The client hired me to create the branding and a new website for a new business she was expanding into.
After researching her target audience and competitors for the new business, I created a series of design mockups for her. I spent considerable time considering the color choices, typefaces, her positioning message and market approach. I was proud and excited to show her my design ideas.
Instead of being excited, she requested a new round of designs…she wasn’t sure what she wanted exactly, but she knew what I showed her wasn’t right.
I went at it again, this time sure that I could find the aesthetic presentation that would speak to her target audience. After another round of designs, again, she didn’t like what she saw and decided to end the project before we went further.
Here’s what I learned from this experience:
1 – there’s a balance betquicween creating something that I think will resonate with the target audience and what the client will personally like. Sometimes they’re different. Next time, I’ll spend more time understanding what the client is actually looking for. One isn’t better than the other–But I need to be clear on what’s priority, in the client’s opinion, because that’s why they’ve hired me.
2 – I wasn’t receptive to what the client was wanting, I was focused on delivering what I thought would work for her audience. Next time, I’ll focus on being more receptive–and presenting what the client wants. I can always offer an alternative suggestion that I think would work, and suggest split-testing.
3 – If a new client isn’t sure on his or her unique offer or position in their market, and doesn’t think there are competitors offering anything like what he/she has…more time needs to be spent researching the market before jumping to designs.