Work at Home Life

Virtual Assistants, Joining Forces, and Reinventing Work At Home

15 Easy Free DoFollow Backlinks to Your Website October 18, 2010

Filed under: Web and Blog Site Tips — Amber Whitener - Virtual IT Assistant @ 3:02 pm
Tags: , ,

Remember from the “Website Backlink Popularity Tools” post: “Backlinks are incoming links to a website, web page, or blog post.” And just so you know, I use the words linkback and backlink interchangeably. 🙂 Also please note that these links will help websites or businesses that are still in the startup phase. I don’t think any of these links have a higher Google Pagerank than 2 or 3. ** This means that creating backlinks from these resources are worthless to a site that already has a pagerank of 4 or higher. **

General Places to Get a Listing for Good (Meaning Not the “NoFollow” Kind) Backlinks / Linkbacks:

1. Merchant Circle is a definite must have business listing. Here’s mine: http://www.merchantcircle.com/business/Virtual.IT.Assistants.317-670-9977

2. http://www.haiku.com/VirtualAssistants This one isn’t one of my favorites, but it works.

Helpful Internet Business Tools:

3. Outright is a cool accounting service that Jen uses for her business. I’ll bet that when she first setup an account with them she didn’t realize they’d give her a free good backlink! See her profile: http://entrepreneurs.outright.com/virtual-assistance-by-jen

Social Network Profiles:

4. Fast Pitch Networking is an internet business social network site. A profile here is worth setting up for the good linkback to your business site: http://www.fastpitchnetworking.com/profile.cfm?ContactID=52366547

5. YouTube Got videos? Get them on YouTube and be sure to fill in your business site into your profile for yet another good linkback. See my profile: http://www.youtube.com/user/virtualitassistants (Scroll down to my avatar and see my link under there. If you are curious about where it shows up.)

6. Inbound Marketing University If you are into internet marketing of any kind, you should already have heard of this place . Even if you are already an experienced inbound marketer, you should at least have a profile here. See mine: http://inboundmarketing.com/user/3906. It also gives you a good link.

Twitter: (Of course, the master tool for getting backlinks and traffic. )

7. Mashable Twitterlists See Kena’s Lists: http://mashable.com/twitterlists/user/KenaRoth/ She may not have realized this when she shared her lists here, but it gave her a free link back to her site from mashable.com. Bonus!

Add Yourself to Local Twitter Lists:

8. Twitter States

9. Local Tweeps

(P.S. Find twitterers near you and follow them. It’s great to have friends all over the world, but you be surprised at how practical it is to get tweets regarding events closer to home)

Website and Blog Site Tools with Profiles That LinkBack:

10. Sitemeter Do you like sharing your site analytics? Create a profile at sitemeter.com for your domain.

11. MyBlogLog If you have a blog, then you need to signup for a free account at mybloglog anyway. – Never mind the free backlinks! See some of my blogs: http://www.mybloglog.com/buzz/members/darkbluesun/

These next profiles may be a little less practical for brand new businesses, but you should still know that they are available to anyone.

12. Act.ly Twitter petitions at act.ly include your web address that you use in your twitter profile. I created one about cybercrime awareness a long time ago: http://act.ly/uo. When you stop by, you should sign it! It’s been awhile, but all the info is still very relevant.

13. Quibblo is a  free online quiz creator. It links back to your site when you set up a profile. See mine: http://www.quibblo.com/user/virtualitassistant

14. Google Knowledge Profiles (called Knols): If you have a knol, or have some good content to start a knoll, you should definitely link back to your business site where appropriate. (Only create one or two links. That should be sufficient.) See mine? http://knol.google.com/k/darkbluesun/the-abc-s-for-work-at-home-parents/1jq3j1sfpra4f/1# I just happened to link to myself within this old business starter e-book.

15. Squidoo lens Do you have one? Do you know someone who does? If you create a linkback to your site from it, then it does give you a good link as well. http://www.squidoo.com/darkbluesun#module29853702

Who is linking back to you right now? Check it out at Link Diagnosis. Look for the ones where the link type equals good. And let me know if I missed any other easy linkbacks.

Another great way to get linkbacks is to guest post for a great blog like this one! 😉 We had to take a break from that little opportunity for a little bit due to the volume of responses and the lack of extra time to find the best ones. There are still so many great guests we will have before the end of this year I promise. However, we still want to fit you into the rotation as well to get your turn in the spotlight! So signup to be a guest blogger today. If you haven’t heard from us and it has been more than 2 business days since you sent your response then please let us know.

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I’m Admitting It! I Can’t Do It All, All The Time. July 9, 2010

Ok…I’m admitting it!  I need a break!  Is that wrong?  Does that make me a bad Mom?  I don’t think so – everyone needs a break every now and then.  Since summer break began I’ve been juggling a very busy schedule.  I can’t speak for the rest of you Work at Home folks, but I know I try to do it all and it’s not working right now.  I needed a little time to work and focus without “Mom, can you make me a milkshake?” or “Mom, can we go swimming NOW?”  In a desperate plea for some alone time, I called my Mom to ask if the boys could come over.  Without any hesitation she said, “Sure, I’ll come get them.  We’d love to have them.”   Thank you so much to my Mom, Dad and Brother.  I have the most wonderful family anyone could ask for!  

Being a WAHM or WAHD [Work at Home Dad] as Scott Stratten aka UnMarketing made famous here… is a wonderful way of life if you can make it work for you.  And, I can see how some just give up and say I’m going back to work – as in, getting a job outside of the home.  I have a lot of respect for working moms and dads.  I have no idea how they get everything done.  I’m at home all day (usually) and I still can’t find the time to do the things that need to be done.  Even with daily chores set for my boys, some days it still looks like a tornado went right through the living room.  A schedule used to be a way of life for us here. But, as my kids get older it’s not working quite as well as it use to.  As a matter of fact, my son said just yesterday, “Um, yeah.  I’m 10 years old now – I don’t need quiet time.”  Ok, so maybe YOU don’t, but I DO! 

This summer has already been very busy for us.  I’ve taken on new clients and even kicked a few to the curb – no more time suckers for me!  On June 25th I had surgery [female issues – don’t ask 😉 ] and last weekend one my 13th wedding anniversary, I was wrestling with my youngest and ended up with a broken nose!  LOL  Who would’ve ever thought a 7 yr-old could break a grownups nose?!  Him breaking my nose wasn’t the bad part…ME  having to pop my own nose back into place was.  OMG!  Talk about peeing your pants!  Ever tried to focus with a broken nose?  Not so easy to do.  It was funny, but it wasn’t, ya know?!  LOL  Oh, did I mention this weekend (July 10th ) is my birthday and July 14th is my son’s 8th birthday?  Phew!  As you can see – it’s already been a crazy summer, but you roll with the punches, right?   

Making life work as an Entrepreneur is very important to me.  I want to work from home and be here for my family.  My life as a WAHM can be hectic, but I love every moment of what I do and I wouldn’t trade my country life for one moment of city life.   

I found this article to be helpful and I’d like to share it with you – How to Work at Home Successfully . 

The Boys and I last Christmas

Tweet: I'm Admitting It! I Can't Do It All, All The Time
 

Exchanging the Flip-Flops & Cowboy Boots for High Heels (only for few hours) April 20, 2010

For a few days in May, I’m trading the flip-flops and cowgirl boots for high heels.  I’ve been asked to speak at The Bob Proctor Matrixx Event (http://www.bobproctormatrixx.com/business-retreat-business-goals-wealth-accumulation/) in Canada.  Although I totally despise being called an expert, I’m going to run with it and be a guest as their Social Media Expert.  I’ll be speaking on using Social Media for Business.  Social Media is a never ending learning process.  There is something new to learn everyday and that is one reason I have a hard time with the term “expert”.

This is going to be a whole new experience for me and my family.  Mom (me) is always here to get everyone out the door.  Whether it is off to work or taking my boys to school with lunches packed, clothes ironed (or thrown in the dryer for wrinkle release 😉 ), papers signed, homework checked or whatever it may be; it’s done by me!  Not that my husband wouldn’t help, it’s just never been an issue of someone else doing it.  Then I thought, “who’s going to water the garden or the flowers?”  When I approached my family about this adventure, there was nothing but quarter sized eye balls and wide opened mouths and a “are you serious”?  I stood firm and said I sure am. 

Q:  “But, Mom, who’s going to make sure all the soap is out of my hair?” 

A:  You’re planning on bathing while I’m gone?  I’m impressed.

Q:  “And who’s going to match my socks up?” 

A:  You or your Dad, or possibly MeMe?!  We’ll figure it out and y’all will make it just fine.  

Q:  “But, Mom you always take me to school and you’re the only one who drops me off at just the right time.”

After a big long discussion of who, what, when and where, my family agreed.  My boys gave me a hug and said “even though we will miss you, we’re very proud of you Momma and what you’re doing with your business and for other online business owners as well.”

I’m not a public speaker and don’t plan on starting now.  However, I do have some knowledge to offer, so why not just get up there and let it out.  I’ve been practicing on my grammar, as well.  I’ve also been trying to say “You All” instead of “Ya’ll.”  But, my husband pointed something out – “They asked YOU to speak and that’s just not YOU honey.” Oh man, he has a point.  Saying ‘Ya’ll’ is one of those things that’s just part of me being me 😉

I’ve always enjoyed being the one behind the scenes; making things flow for my clients online and obviously my family at home.  I never had any desire to “go anywhere” but after some serious thought, I decided I’m going to do this!  Yes!!  I’m going to Canada.  Am I nervous?  Hell Yeah, but I can do this for the industry.

So, here’s to all of us – entrepreneurs, online business owners, virtual assistants and small business owners for getting out there and letting it be known about what exactly we do and how important each and every one of us is.  I’ll be kicking off the flip-flips and boots for a couple of hours and wearing my big girl shoes!

tweetmeme

Wish me luck –

Cheers!

 

Are You a Tire Kicker? If So, Knock It Off! March 26, 2010

 Wow, this has been one crazy week!  I’m helping a local client with tax preparations, not to mention the growing need for Social Media – clients inquiring everyday (new and current clients), a child with the stomach flu and the other child was in the school play this week.  I’M EXHAUSTED!  Did I mention the last minute project that needs to be finished by Friday night at midnight?

 Being a Virtual Assistant, you receive a lot of inquiries, such as, “Now what does a Virtual Assistant do exactly?”   That’s ok, since most VAs I know love to explain what a VA can do for you and how it works.  But, quite often you get these tire kickers – asking repeatedly how you can help with no real intention of using your service at that time.  Anyone else experience this?

In the middle of one heck of a busy Friday – I see a post from a prospect, potential client or tire kicker.  I had spoken to the prospect a couple months back.  They asked me how I did this, this and this and I told them.  Yea, I told them – They were inquiring about using my services and expertise to add to their list. Well, guess what?  They’re now using my services exactly how I told them I would do it, but, without me.  That’s ok though 😉

The saying, “You get what you pay for,” is oh so true in the virtual world.  It’s taken me awhile to learn this, but it always comes back to you.  Word to the wise for you tire-kickers…we’re catching on and we know your kicking several tires.  The Virtual Assistant community is a close knit community for the most part and yes, we do give warnings to our friends.

That being said, there’s nothing wrong in speaking with several Virtual Assistants to see which one (if one) is a perfect match for you; but not on a continual basis.  Our job is to help your business grow and that’s why we’re here.  So, no more tire kicking and let’s take your business to the next level!

 

Taking a break – Getting Away in any Small Way March 12, 2010

           Work and play are words used to describe the same thing  under differing conditions. – Mark Twain        

      

  Mark Twain’s words are truer today than ever. The native of our home state knew that to be effective in your work life, you also need to know how to play. As you dive into social media marketing you are often mixing work with play. Personal relationships cross over into your work world. It may mean you forget the fun.

             You started this venture to be in control of your own destiny. You might have wanted to earn a little bit of extra money. You might have wanted to grow an existing business, or start fresh on your own. Now, don’t forget the fun that’s in the adventure.

            If you’re struggling with which move to make next, try getting away to figure it out. Everyone needs a break. When you get consumed in work, a step back may be the best thing for your growing business.

            You could take a virtual vacation (http://www.link4u.com/vacation.htm), but maybe you need a little more than that. Remember the world is a real place. Remember how to play. Put your actual feet in actual sand, or if you’re not able to do that, just find the best that your area has to offer and go do it. Stepping away for a few minutes, or a few days is a great way to unwind and think about what’s next.

            Play may be the best way to improve your work, and remember the enjoyment in it.

            So, our advice for this week is to check out the local “What to do” section of your newspaper. Get your family or friends together and put some extra “life” into your life. You might not be able to completely log off, but you should take time to enjoy the reward for your efforts and step back for a few days before diving into the grind again.

            Have fun.

Taking a break – Getting Away in any Small Way
 

So what will using Social Media do for me? (WIIFM) January 29, 2010

Filed under: Social Networking — kena-virtuallyassistingyou @ 2:01 pm
Tags: , , ,

When it comes down to it, the real reason why you need to engage in social media boils down to forming the right relationships and doing so the right way.  Here are some reasons why:

  • You will find whomever you want to do business with somewhere online.
  • You will find whatever knowledge you need about any market or any person online.
  • You can reach your market by simply engaging in the right conversations with the right people.  It’s more effective than just advertising.
  • If your business can’t be found, it isn’t engaging with your target market or, worse yet, ignoring your target market.  You’re not going to likely be creating transactional opportunities while your competition is.
  • Communication through social media is a system to leverage your organization’s ability to communicate with your market.
  • Social media saves time and money if used correctly and for the right reasons.
  • If you learn how to use social media correctly then you will understand what your market is looking for and where they are looking.  You want them to look for you, not you chase them.
  • When your customers and prospects are engaging about you, your industry, your products or your services, you need to be there listening.  Otherwise, how will you gain the necessary market intelligence, be able to respond or even be aware of problems or needs?  If you’re not present when and where the conversations happen, you’re basically out of touch with your target market.
  • Social media communication is about reach and relational dynamics about people.  It provides the means to effectively communicate with your target market in human, rather than institutional, terms.
  • If you are not communicating (listening first, initiating second), then how in the world do you expect to create relationships with people and businesses that may want what you have to offer and communicate your value to them?

In the old days, when people needed or wanted something, they’d look up information in the yellow pages.  Today, people turn to search engines to find what they want or need.  Every day, Google is used an average of 235 million times for searches.  The yellow pages’ days are over. People are going online more and more to find what they want or need and to find out what other consumers think or say about a product, service or brand.  The relevancy that influences people’s buying behavior is other people’s conversation, yours included.  That’s if they can even find your conversation and if it provides the value they are looking for.

To sum it up: These days, the Web isn’t a place to look for information, it’s the only place.

 

I Have my Facebook Fanpage Setup, Now What? January 22, 2010

 Facebook is a busy place. There are over 250 million active users on Facebook, and more than 120 million of them log in every day. Those in-the-know are taking advantage of Facebook and promoting themselves and their products using Facebook’s platform through one of the actual business applications-the business fan page. I have seen quite a few of these pages popping up around companies that haven’t had a social media presence until someone decided to put the page together. A fan page is a facebook page, similar to a personal profile, centered on businesses, organizations and people that have fans, such as public figures, writers, artists, etc.

Making a fan page takes just a few minutes – add some information about your company, your URL, upload your logo and you’re done. Then, when someone becomes a fan of your fan page, everything you publish appears in their News feed for all their fans and friends to read (unless they have this feature turned off). It makes someone joining your fan page somewhat viral.

The goals you want to have in place when using Facebook for business are:

  • To get found by people who are searching for your products or services.
  • Connect and engage with current and potential customers.
  • Create a community around your business.
  • Promote positive content, including webinars, blog posts or other resources.

Ok, so now what? I suggest creating Google Alerts with industry related search terms. Posting these articles and blogs to your fanpage will help your fans become more aware of what you have to offer along with building your business and brand.

 

 
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