Writing that Winning Cover Letter: Your Ultimate Guide


The cover letter is one of the most important parts of your job search. It’s the first impression you make on a hiring manager, and it can mean the difference between getting an interview and not getting one at all. In this book, you’ll learn how to write a cover letter that will help you stand out from the crowd and get your foot in the door of the company you want to work for. You’ll also learn the dos and don’ts of the cover letter so you don’t make the same mistakes that other job seekers have made in the past. This book will teach you everything you need to know about writing a winning cover letter, including:

– How to write the perfect cover letter

– The best cover letter mistakes to avoid and how to fix them

You’ll also discover the top 10 cover letter tips that you can use to make your cover letter stand out and get you the job you want. This is a must-read book for anyone who is looking for a new job, whether you’re looking for your first job out of college or you’ve been out of the workforce for a while and are looking to get back into the job market. Whether you’re a recent graduate or a seasoned professional, this book will show you how to make a great first impression and land the job of your dreams!

Whether you’re applying for a job at a company you’ve never worked for before or you’re an experienced professional looking for that next step in your career, you’re going to need a great cover letter. A cover letter can be one of your most powerful job search tools, but it can also be your biggest job search mistake. That’s why it’s so important to make sure you get it right. With this book as your guide, you won’t have to worry about making a bad first impression or wasting your time and energy on a job application that won’t get you any closer to your dream job. You’re about to discover the secrets to writing the perfect job search cover letter and using it to get the job that you want!

The Cover Letter

When it comes to the job search, there’s no such thing as a bad cover letter—as long as it’s written correctly. A well-written cover letter will get you an interview, and a poorly written cover letter could be the reason you never hear back from the hiring manager. If you want a job, you’ve got to be willing to do whatever it takes to get it, and that includes writing a killer cover letter! In this chapter, we’ll talk about the different types of cover letters, and we’ll show you the best way to write one. We’ll also show you some cover letter examples so you can see what a good cover letter looks like and what a bad one looks like. Then we’ll give you some tips on how to avoid the most common mistakes that job seekers make when writing their cover letters. Finally, in the last section of this chapter we’ll tell you what you should and shouldn’t include in your cover letters and give you a checklist to help you make sure that you’ve covered all of the important points. By the time you’re done reading this chapter you’ll be able to write an effective cover letter for any job you apply for, and you’ll know exactly what to include and what to leave out so that you get the interview you want and the job offer that you deserve. Let’s get started with the basics of writing a great job application cover letter:

1. Know What Type of Cover Letter to Write

There are two main types of job applications: the online application and the paper application. The online application is the one you fill out on the company’s website. The paper application is a paper form that you mail in to the company. Both of these types of applications have their pros and cons, so it’s important to know which one you should be using before you start applying for jobs. For example, if you have a lot of experience in a certain field, you may want to apply for jobs in that field, but if you’re just starting out in a new field, it may be better for you to apply to jobs in your current field. The type of cover letter you write will depend on which type of job application you’re using, so let’s take a look at both of them and see which one is best for you.

If you’re filling out an online application, you should use the same cover letter format that you would use if you were filling out a paper application, and vice versa. The only difference between the two is the type of application form you use, so make sure to choose the one that’s right for you before you fill it out.

Online Applications

Online applications are the easiest and fastest way to get a job. All you have to do is fill out the form on the website and submit it. You don’t even have to print it out—you can just fill it in on your computer. Online applications are great because you can fill them out at any time of the day or night, and they’re easy to fill out and submit. The downside to online applications is that they’re not as personal as paper applications, so you may not get as many interviews as you would if you applied for a paper job. The good news is that online applications are much easier to write than paper applications.

The most important thing to remember when writing an online cover letter is that it should be short and to the point. Don’t waste your time writing a long cover letter when you only have a few minutes to do it in. The cover letter should be no more than two or three paragraphs long, and it should include the following information:

1. Your name and contact information (phone number, e-mail address, and mailing address)

2. A brief explanation of why you’re interested in the job (for example, “I’m interested in this job because it’s a great opportunity for me to advance my career” or “I’d like to work for this company because I’ve heard great things about it”)

You don’t need to go into any great detail about why you want the job, but you do need to explain why you think you’d be a good fit for the position. If the job posting doesn’t tell you anything about the person who will be interviewing you, it’s up to you to convince them that you’re the right person for the job. In your cover letter, you need to make it clear that you have the skills and experience that the company is looking for, so be sure to include information about your relevant work experience, education, and any other skills that you think will help you stand out from the other applicants. If there’s a job posting for a specific position, you can use that job posting as a guide for what information you should include in the cover letter to make your application stand out.

3. Your resume

4. References

5. Salary requirements

6. How to apply

7. When to apply

Paper Applications

Paper applications are the traditional way of applying for a job—you fill out a form, mail it in, and wait for the company to get back to you. Paper applications are a little more time-consuming than online applications, but they’re also a lot more personal. You get to write a cover letter that’s tailored to the position you’re applying for, you get to include more information about yourself than you would on an online form, and the company gets to know you a little better before they decide whether or not they want to interview you. The downsides to paper applications are that they take a little longer to write and they can be a little harder to submit, so if you don’t have a ton of time on your hands, paper applications may not be the best option for you—but if you do have the time, they’re a great way to make a personal connection with the hiring manager and get your foot in the door. Here are some other things to keep in mind when you’re writing a paper cover letter.

Don’t use a generic cover letter—make sure to tailor it to the specific job posting you’re responding to. If you’re not sure what kind of job you want, ask the company what they’re looking for in a candidate. If they don’t give you any information, ask them why they’re hiring and what they hope to get out of the person they hire. You can use this information to help you write a more personalized cover letter for that specific job.

Improve Your Writing: 6 Tips for Becoming a Better Writer

Tom Anderson

How to Become a Better Writer

Great writing is magic, but there is no magic to being a better writer. It is an exercise in time and suffering. The more time you spend writing, the more your writing skills will improve. No writing tips can eliminate the pain.

To begin, begin. “I don’t think you have time to waste not writing because you are afraid you won’t be good at it,” writes novelist, activist and teacher Anne Lamott in her excellent guide “Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life.” The book is named after the writing advice Lamott’s novelist father gave to her brother when he waited until the last minute to complete a big school report on birds: “Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.”

Showing up is the hard part. Even great writers have to push themselves to grapple with the blank screen every day. But once you sit down and start, progress can be made. It gets easier every time you write; you just have to write frequently to make progress.

Believe me, I understand this is easier said than done. I sometimes will organize my office and do less pressing administrative tasks to avoid an urgent deadline assignment. I’m not alone in this. Most people struggle with finding the time to write, or worse, underestimate how much time it will take to complete an assignment well.

That said, I do get it done. I’ve been writing professionally for more than two decades. I can say from experience that writing and communication skills are learned best by doing. I can also say there are ways to make starting simpler: For instance, breaking a project into digestible chunks is an excellent way to approach any writing assignment, whether it’s a blog post, a white paper or a bestseller.

Timebox Your Writing Assignments

I like to write first thing in the morning after a run. Many writers I know work best late at night. It doesn’t matter if you are an early bird or night owl as long as you set aside distraction-free writing time, ideally during your personal golden hours.

How long you can timebox writing tasks in one go depends on the writer. Remember that it takes some time to warm up. Setting aside 90 minutes on your calendar doesn’t mean you’ll be cranking the entire time.

You should, however, be able to make progress. Seek to set aside enough time to allow for this progress, while also recognizing the realities of your schedule. (Say, if it’s a day when you have multiple meetings and you’re taking your child to the doctor, an eight-hour writing block may be unrealistic.)

If you’re on deadline, that’s another story that we will address shortly. But blocking out time consistently to write will enhance your writing ability. You don’t have to write every day, but it sure helps.

Finding enough time to write is the biggest excuse writers give editors when they miss deadlines. And sure, content marketing workloads can be challenging. Most of us are using our limited resources to the max.

However, I argue that the difficulty in writing is more of a time management problem than one with words. Writer’s block is a myth. This next tactic will help you overcome this imagined self-harm.

6 Tips for Becoming a Better Writer

1. Learn the Difference Between “Better Writer” and “Great Writer”

I hear this all the time from my coaching clients, who range from first time authors to old hands who have written millions of words. “Tim, I don’t want to become a better writer. I want to become a great writer!”

When I ask what that means exactly, they usually drop a few names off the top of their heads to give me a point of reference. “You know, like Hemingway, Capote, King, Vidal, Chandler, Christie, Grisham, Patterson, Dr. Seuss (seriously, it’s been dropped).”

Come on folks, who among you under the age of say 40 has ever read a word Hemingway wrote that wasn’t mandatory reading? Or Capote? Or Vidal? Then stop namedropping them, even though they are among the greatest writers of all time.

Probably not. I can offer tips and advice that might make you a better writer in the future than you are right now. Someone else may help you become a more successful writer, or a more notable writer. But becoming a great writer is up to you, and depends more on your God given talent and abilities than anything you can learn in a video or blog post from me or anyone else.

We writers wear our hearts on our sleeves and our egos around our necks like heavy gold chains. We would all like to be considered great writers by our audience and peers, but what matters is your opinion of yourself and how you define great.

Greatness in our industry is typically based on sales volume and dollar signs, not true talent. I’ve seen terrible books sell millions of copies, and great books languish in the Amazon basement.

2. Write Every Day

This should go without saying, but here goes. To become a better writer, you must write every day. Writing is like every other skill that can be improved through repetition and practice. Or a muscle that must be exercised to grow big and strong.

Or the “10,000-hour rule”, which states that to master any skill, you must practice for 10,000 hours or more. If you want to become a better writer, write more words more often. End of story.

Improve Your Writing: 6 Tips for Becoming a Better Writer

3. Don’t Follow the Herd

The herd mentality is alive and well in the writing business. You look at what’s selling on Amazon and decide that you should follow that herd because if other writers are making a killing in sci-fi, why shouldn’t you?

Or you hear of someone in a Facebook group who is making a bundle writing romance, so you figure, why shouldn’t you, even though you’ve never even read a romance, much less written one.

4. Write What You Love

Again, this should go without saying, but many authors forget this simple rule because what they love to write isn’t selling, so they try to write in other genres they think will offer faster, easier paydays. That’s when writing becomes a chore, and quite often, the joy of writing dies along with your desire to become a better writer.

When you write what you love, you bring passion to the work. You focus on the writing, not the sales numbers. You put your heart and soul into it, not to mention a fair amount of blood, sweat, and tears. And you do it because you love it, not because it pays the bills. You’re proud of what you do, because doing it makes you happy.

When you write what you love, you also tend to write more words, more often (see tip #2). You will become a better writer in that genre. And maybe someday your dedication to writing what you love will pay off. Even if it doesn’t, you would have followed your heart and not the herd (see tip #3).

5. Read as Much as You Write

Stephen King said it best, “If you want to be a writer you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” I believe if you want to become a great writer you have to read a great deal of books in your genre. For example, if you want to become a great sci-fi writer, read the current bestsellers and classic sci-fi books (bestsellers to determine what’s selling in the market today and classics to see what has stood the test of time). Listen to King. He knows his stuff. Read as much as you write.

6. Write with the Reader in Mind

Have you ever read a book that left you scratching your head, wondering what point the author was trying to convey to you, the reader? I see this quite a bit with coaching clients who are new to the craft of writing. They write their masterpiece without ever giving a single thought to the reader, the person they expect to buy, enjoy, review, rate, and recommend their work.

As an old entrepreneur, I believe you should consider the reader to be your customer, and everything you do in creating your book, i.e. your product, must be done with the reader in mind.



How to Prepare for an Interview in 6 Steps

A woman in a pin striped business suit walks through a commercial park with a briefcase and files.

How to Prepare for an Interview

You can prepare for an interview by researching the company and the person interviewing you. Study the job description and consider what the employer is looking for, and how your skills and experience could help. Make sure to jot down potential talking points and questions, dress in business attire and pack a few copies of your resume, references and pens.

“As soon as you get the call or email saying you have been chosen for an interview, the first thing to do is do some more research into the position you applied for,” said Steven Brathwaite, a career advisor at SNHU. “Companies will know if your interest and energy are off in the interview or if you’re not fully invested in the position. Start to get into the mindset of what it will take day in and day out to be successful in that role.”

Conduct a Self-Assessment

Another important step in preparing for an interview is conducting a self-assessment. Reflect on your career. Think about what you’ve accomplished so far and what you want to accomplish in the future. Also, consider your preferences for workplace culture. What kinds of personalities complement your own? You’ll want to reflect on these topics as they will likely come up in an interview.

There are many options for online self-assessments. Although some are designed to guide people when deciding on a career, many assessments are also helpful for interview preparation. The results may help you find the right words to describe yourself.

Conducting a self-assessment is also a good time to search for yourself online. According to a CareerBuilder survey, 70% of employers use social media to research job candidates and 66% use search engines. It may be too late to do a complete overhaul of your online reputation if you’ve already scheduled an interview, but there’s still time to make some last-minute edits to your LinkedIn profile. Familiarize yourself with what employers see when they search for you so you’re prepared to answer any questions about their findings.

8). Ask Intelligent or Provocative Questions at the end of the Interview

It is important to conduct meticulous research about the recruiter, the business, and credentials before attending the job interview. Every interview session ends with the interviewer asking if the interviewee has any questions. Preparing answers that depict your superlative analysis or intelligence can help you create a positive impact on the interviewer during this phase. Avoid controversial or confrontational interrogations and ensure that your questions are not naïve or baseless when responding.

When the interview is complete, retrieve the documents and accessories from the desk and thank the interviewers. It is recommended to offer a good handshake to at least one member of the interview panel to show your amiable attitude. After getting back to your desk, send a follow-up email with thanks, for the interviewing opportunity you were offered. This helps to create a memorable account of the candidate, boosting the chances of being hired. It is best to follow up with an email after the interview to assess if you’re hired or not.

10). Practice Mock Interview

It is important to prepare thoroughly when you have a job interview coming. Collect common interview questions, tips, and advice from your contacts working in the same company or industry can help immensely during the time. Ultimately, being prepared is vital to boost your self-confidence as a candidate. To convince the recruiter to hire you must first convince yourself. It is best to seek assistance from a friend or family to help you with practice interviews. Candidates can also use a mirror to prepare and analyze the dialogue delivery, pronunciation, and vocabulary of themselves. Moreover, all your achievements are futile if you can’t prove your competencies in a personal interview!

Regardless of how thoroughly prepared you are, the interview will have many unexpected questions and moments. To overcome nervousness, anxiety, and self-doubts during the interview, candidates must prepare their pitch until confidence sets in. Practice, practice and more practice is the biggest secret to a great interview. It is useful to prepare answers to common job interview questions that apply to your industry to hold your poise and give your best at a job interview. Good Luck!



How To Start A Retail Business: A 6-Step Comprehensive Guide

An influencer talking on a loudspeaker

How to Start a Retail Business in Singapore?

Starting a retail business in Singapore can be one of your best decisions ever. A retail business, which is commonly referred to as shops, kiosks, and many more, is an efficient and innovative means to sell consumers’ needs or products.

The extent of retail sales growth in Singapore can not be overemphasized. Singapore is home to craftsmen, local artisans, and business personnel. In addition, we have areas in the retail sector such as speciality retail, food & beverages, general retailing, work, home & lifestyle, and wholesale & logistics. These areas vary but are the major retail sectors in Singapore.

However, it should be noted that not all companies or persons can start a retail business; a license has to be obtained. In addition, not all grounds can be implemented for commercial practices; for example, residential environments can not be used for any exchange services.

What is a Retail Business?

In contrast to wholesaling, the retail business is a common way of selling one’s goods or services to customers by inducing their pleasure, usage, or consumption to earn profit. Therefore, if you are buying from that local woman kiosk in your neighbourhood, you are patronizing her retail business. And in other terms, you may have the goal to buy from a manufacturer or wholesaler and sell in smaller quantities. This is also retailing.

Retail businesses influence the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of a country’s economy. In Singapore’s economy, the retail sector contributes 1.4 per cent to the GDP and employs 3 per cent of the country’s workforce.

We can verily say that retailing can begin in numerous forms. For one, you can obtain your goods from a manufacturer or wholesaler, offer your services to your customers, or work digitally and make deliveries of the customer’s product without a physical shop or kiosk insight. In Singapore, every e-commerce retailer that falls under Singapore Broadcasting Authority (SBA) Act, all other licensing broadcasting services, online computer services provided by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and Internet Content Providers (ICPs) inclusive, must be licensed. And since all internet content is considered broadcast content, individuals must then take note.

Either way, it can be rightly said that the nature of the retail business would determine the approval needed or licenses required to create a retail store in Singapore. The process is quite straightforward and easy to obtain. In this guide, we are to explore the various processes needed to achieve this. Be rest assured.

Moneyyy, it’s a gas!

Close up shot of dollar bills

Very few things have more power in altering the course of your business than money. It’s an essential commodity that you need to open a store and hence it’s imperative that you plan this aspect of building your business in the best possible way. Here’s how you can get started on this.

How much will the whole affair cost?

What if things go south?

Opening a retail store is one thing while owning a retail shop for a substantial period for it to get established is an entirely different thing! Have a rough estimate of how much time it’s going to take for you to reach the break-even point, that is when the total cost and total revenue are equal.

Is there a deficit?

Retail business owner checking funds

Don’t worry, you don’t have to Google “how to open a retail store with no money”, and bang your head around getting those finances in place! To make things easy for you, In this section we exclusively talk about how you can look for alternate means of getting the required funds:

  • Bootstrapping: This basically involves anything and everything inside of the outside circle! So all the money that you invest from your own savings + all the money that you borrow from your inner circle such as friends, family, colleagues, etc., fall into this category, as there’s no external funding involved herein.
  • Small business loans and grants: The U.S. Small Business Administration is a special government agency that supports small shop businesses and entrepreneurs in their journey of starting up. There are a variety of schemes under which you can avail loans and grants to acquire funds for your business.
  • Angel investors: These are affluent individuals who invest their own money into startup ventures. They typically help you take your business off-ground, and get started on selling. The best way to find angel investors is through networking. Ask your friends or family members if they know any such investors. Besides, you can also find angel investors on different platforms or websites such as AngelList, Angel Capital Association, Gust, Angel Forum, Angel Investment Network, etc.
  • Venture capital: VC is a form of private equity and a type of financing that investors provide to startup companies and small businesses that are believed to have long-term growth potential. Although VCs won’t be of much help at the beginning of setting up a business, they will come in handy at the later stages when you want to expand your business further.
  • Crowdfunding: It basically is a method of raising funds for a business or project by collecting relatively small amounts of money from a large number of contributors using an online platform. Indiegogo, SeedInvest Technology, Mighty Cause, StartEngine, GoFundMe, and Patreon are the top 6 crowdfunding platforms that you can look into.

Again, planning financials is something that all of us inherently seem to know for whatever reasons. However, if this looks intimidating, you might want to consider roping in an expert to take care of this because this is an essential aspect of any “steps to open a retail store” handbook that you’ll ever come across.

Deciding on branding, concept, and design

Your branding is effectively the common thread that ties together your shop’s name, your business’ logo, the shop’s interior design, the tone of voice you use when communicating with and advertising to customers, the way the shop’s website looks and feels, and the posts you share on social media – making all of these facets recognisable as a part of your business.

Why? Because the new design did not connect with Gap’s target market. Instead of warning its target market about its rebrand, Gap simply released its new designs, taking away the identity of the brand. Its audience simply did not resonate with the corporate-esque replacement, which meant they quickly reverted to the original design and wasted lots of money in the process!

When you’re thinking about your brand design, make sure it’s accessible. Many startups are all guilty of wanting to be perceived as ‘top end’ – however, you can achieve this too well, and frighten off your customers with the perception that your products will be too expensive and out of their budget.

Branding should also be memorable. Isobel Perl, founder and CEO of Perl Cosmetics, told us that creating a standout brand is key to attracting new customers: “There is a plethora of competition in the skincare/beauty industry with tens of thousands of new businesses being set up each year.

It’s also about the finishing touches. Branding might seem like an area you can save – but it’s actually the most visible aspect of your business in most cases. I nvest in the services of a designer or design company who’ll put time, skill, and effort into transforming your vision and energy into an amazing branding concept.

Product Perl Cosmetics



How To Become a Preschool Teacher: Requirements and FAQs

teaching professionals

The Iowa Teaching and Certification Resource

Like all US states, Iowa requires teachers to hold a bachelor’s degree and complete an approved teacher education program at an accredited institution. Additionally, applicants are required to take the Praxis Subject Assessments to evaluate knowledge in the subject(s) to be taught. There are three types of Iowa teacher certification: Initial, Standard, and Master Educator.

The Initial certificate is valid for two years and is issued to new teachers who meet the state’s basic requirements. Once two years of successful teaching are accomplished, based upon local evaluations, teachers may apply for a Standard License which is valid for five years. Both Initial and Standard certificates may be renewed. Teachers may also earn a Master Educator License, which is valid for five years, by successfully completing five years of teaching and earning a master’s degree in the appropriate endorsement area.

Finding Approved Teacher Education Programs in Iowa

Projected Job Growth

Candidates for teacher licensure in Iowa must complete a bachelor’s degree as well as a state-approved Iowa teacher preparation program at an accredited school. You can see approved programs on the Iowa Department of Education website. You can also compare key metrics for these state-approved teacher preparation programs by using the sortable table on our Iowa schools page.

Additionally, schools may be accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) This organization was formed by the consolidation of the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC). CAEP accreditation is a highly respected marker of excellence in teacher education.

FAQs about preschool teachers

1. Do preschool teachers need to take continuing education courses?

Some states require preschool teachers to hold a license to legally work. To keep their credentials current, preschool teachers are required to complete continuing education classes. State requirements vary, so individuals should find out the continuing education rules in their state.

2. Is it necessary to earn a master’s degree?

While it’s not necessary to earn a graduate or master’s degree to work as a preschool teacher, pursuing a master’s or doctoral degree can help you advance into administrative education positions. If you want to advance your career, you need to have a graduate degree to achieve those goals.

3. What is the typical work schedule for a preschool teacher?

The work schedule of preschool teachers varies, but their day usually begins around 9 a.m. and lasts until 3 p.m. Some preschool teachers work a regular school calendar (10 months), with a two-month summer vacation. However, daycare teachers typically work all year to accommodate working parents.

4. Are preschool teachers required to complete specialized training?

Because working effectively with young children requires understanding their intellectual, emotional and physical needs, you may need to take training in child development. Child development training allows you to learn more about developing age-appropriate activities and best practices to help preschoolers build essential skills.

Some employers may require you to participate in specialized training related to the type of learning system that they use, or the curriculum being taught. For instance, if you plan to work in a Montessori preschool, you may be required to take special training to understand and implement the Montessori methods of teaching. Likewise, if you want to work with children with learning disabilities, you may need to attend training that helps you understand children’s unique needs.

5. What skills are required to become a successful preschool teacher?

Communication skills

Preschool teachers must have exceptional communication skills to tell colleagues and parents about students’ progress. They also need excellent speaking and writing skills to convey this information effectively. They should be able to communicate effectively with young children.


Interpersonal skills

Organizational skills

Physical stamina

6. What are the working conditions for a preschool teacher?

Preschool teachers usually spend much of their workday on a playground or in a classroom. Learning facilities vary from a single room to large buildings. The class size that preschool teachers handle also varies. Some preschools handle only a handful of children, while others handle several hundred.

Alternative Teaching Opportunities

Alternative Teaching Opportunities

If you already have a college degree, spending a few more years in school before becoming a teacher might not appeal to you. You might qualify for an alternative approach instead.

In some states, there are programs that allow you to hold a paid teaching position and go through a training program at the same time. For example, Teach for America recruits people to work in underserved communities.

Some states offer alternative certification programs for professionals with backgrounds in high-demand subject areas. For example, if you have a degree in a science field, a school that is having trouble recruiting a certified science teacher may hire you for the job. You could start teaching while working toward certification.

Also, not every teaching position requires teacher training classes and state licensure. For example, many preschools don’t require their teachers to be licensed. Some private school positions don’t need licensure either. Teaching overseas might be another option.



20 Tips to Master Social Media in 2022 for Small Business

Buffer Reply Example

7 Social Media Tips for Small Business Success

The biggest failures small businesses encounter in social media come from not knowing who their customers are, who they’re competing against, which channels to target, and how to engage their audience. Most are unaware of native analytics available in all major social networks and don’t know how to integrate their online and offline marketing activities or how to automate their social scheduling.

Remember that having competitors who target the same people is great because you can always check what worked for them and what didn’t, and use this knowledge to adjust your own strategy.

My advice is to start with the big fish. These guys are doing something right to get the kind of follower count and engagement they have, so why not learn from them? There are a few ways of doing this.

Use Facebook’s Pages to identify your best-performing competitors and compare their activity, engagement, and audience growth to your own. You can see exactly what content they’re posting, how often, and at what time of day they’re posting. Remember to not only look at follower count but total engagement: it will tell you how their followers are interacting with the content. Brands with high engagement rates are typically the ones to watch.

Facebook Pages Social Media Example

Not entirely sure who your competitors are? That’s ok. There are tools out there that can help you find the competitors you might not have been aware of. For example, with SEMrush’s Competitive Positioning Map all you need to do is to enter your URL, and the tool will automatically compile data showing you your top competitors, how much traffic they’re getting and the keywords they’re ranking for:

SEM Rush Competitive Positioning Map

Pay special attention to the bubbles located above you and to your right. They represent the competitors whose total traffic exceeds yours and who are ranking for more keywords than you are.

This report will give you a good idea of who has a strong online presence, and who is investing heavily in marketing. Brands investing in marketing and getting plenty of traffic typically have strong social presences, so they’ll be good ones to check out.

If you need more advanced social media competitive analytics, tools like Rival IQ, SproutSocial, Klear, or SEMrush can provide them. They will help you track your competitors’ social pages to see how their posts perform, how much engagement they receive, which hashtags they use, and what special offers and competitions they’re running on social.

Tip #2: Pick the Right Channel to Target

If you are starting your social media journey from scratch, it’s advisable that you pull together a survey and ask your customers which social media channels they prefer or use the most.

If you’re already active on social media channels, check their efficiency. Compare the size of your audience across different channels, your engagement, and engagement rate metrics. For example, the overview report in Social Media Tracker shown below will give you an idea of which channels are worth putting effort into:

Social Channels Social Media Tracker Example

Another way to pick the right target channel is to analyze your competitors’ activity. Check which channels they put their energies into, and start targeting them too: your chances of getting noticed by the relevant audience will double.

Bonus Tip: Be ruthless in getting rid of some of your accounts and prioritize your social media marketing capabilities. Not ready to make videos? Skip YouTube. Don’t have time for blog writing? Leave it for now and concentrate on one or two channels.

Define Your Business Social Media Marketing Goals

Defining your social media marketing goals and objectives is the first step in enhancing your brand awareness. Ensure that you set appropriate and achievable goals when starting your social media marketing. Experts advise that you consider the SMART goal framework when breaking down the achievement you want from your online strategy. The goals or objectives you choose for your small business must be specific, measurable, timely, attainable, and relevant. Having clear and timely goals for your business makes it easy to plan and execute different social media strategies, track the progress and make wise decisions.

Committing to social media is the essential thing that any entrepreneur or small business must do to enhance successful marketing. Like other marketing alternatives, you might find it challenging to create good content, grow your audience or increase engagement when using social media marketing. Therefore, it’d be appropriate to commit to the marketing option by consistently creating great and attractive content. It’ll also be good to have a plan and goals, which you must follow to enhance your brand awareness through social media.

Reveal Your Personality and Identity

Revealing your identity and personality on these platforms is an integral way of enhancing the success of your brand. Creating a significant social media presence will be good when choosing the social media marketing alternative. A great social media presence attracts more followers to read your content or your brand’s website, leading to prospective customers and generating more sales. Therefore, after getting online, it’ll be necessary to show the value of your services or products and also enhance connections.

Experts reveal that most entrepreneurs build great social marketing platforms and programs by listening more to the customers. Instead of promoting your small business on various social media platforms, you must consider listening to customers’ views and opinions. Preferably, use social media to interact with your customers or prospective clients. The interaction and engagement allow the customers to provide their views or issues on your brand. Working on the customer’s concerns will be essential to establishing the best ideas to suit their needs.

8 Tips to Quickly Master Social Media for Businesses and Entrepreneurs

8 Social Media Tips for Businesses and Entrepreneurs

1. Make a commitment to social media

Like any other form of marketing, social media for businesses can be a real challenge. It’s hard to grow an audience, create great content, and increase engagement. All too often we see brands giving up on social media after just a few months.

We’ve found that it takes eight months to one year to really get the hang of social. Not only to get a consistent content stream going, but to figure out what your audience resonates with and what they don’t.

It all starts with planning. Create a social media strategy and write it down in order to hold your business accountable. Your strategy should include a basic company mission statement, content plan and goals. And most importantly, a powerful statement on “why” people would follow you on social media, what kind of content you plan on creating and posting, and what you hope to achieve.

2. Show off your personality

Creating a great social media presence isn’t only about showing the value of your product or service to your audience. It’s about connection and experiences. The best brands out there share a common point of view with their fans.

3. Listen to customers rather than promote

Social media is becoming a customer service platform and people are coming to expect it. The tricky part is, the better you get at social the more engagement you’ll get, and in turn, the more comments. So be prepared for an influx of love from your fans!

The other side is that your customers are the best source of inspiration for content. Lots of businesses are sitting on a never-ending gold mine of content ideas by simply looking at their frequently asked questions, or what people are asking on social media. If you’re stuck on what to post, look to your customers first for ideas before anything else.

You can also listen to competitor’s customers as well, as funny as that sounds. Tools like Twitter Lists, BuzzSumo, Facebook Pages to Watch, Google Keyword Planner, and YouTube are all great places to find what’s working in your industry.

4. Focus your efforts on a select networks

Social media networks are like shiny new objects. We want to be everywhere at once and try everything because we’re sure that this network will be the one for us. But the fact is we’re all strapped for resources. So if you try to focus on lots of social networks then you’re setting yourself up for a long road ahead.

We tried! At one time we were everywhere. We were on all of the standard networks along with lesser-known networks like Anchor, Beme, Tumblr, and Whale. What we found was that we were getting average results across the board. Not to mention it was taking full days to post content to each platform. It wasn’t sustainable.

For example, let’s say we write a blog post about social media marketing. Writing the copy that will get attention and clicks on LinkedIn is much different than what works on Facebook, which is dramatically different than what works on Instagram, Snapchat, or Twitter.

5. Remember that success follows passion

The only way to ensure long term commitment and that social media doesn’t become a burden is to follow your passion. The nice thing about social media is that your content doesn’t have to be directly related to your brand or industry. Meaning it doesn’t have to be what everyone else is doing.

6. Experiment with video marketing

Many marketers tell us that they struggle with “what” to create video about. The best solution we have for you when it comes to “what” is to start with what works. Sort your blog content in order of most traffic and create videos around those topics.

Again, use Facebook Pages to Watch to figure out what kinds of videos your competitors are making and generate topic ideas based off of that. Use your customers as resources. Look outside of your specific industry to your favorite brands. The key is to start with what works and gain some confidence.

In terms of video best-practices, there are some scientific factors that people are more likely to interact with. One is video length. On Facebook, for example, the highest engaging videos are between 60-90 seconds. The second highest are between 30-60 seconds. Same holds true for Twitter. So keep your videos short and to the point. Save the best for first, if you will.

If you’re going to feature a person (or group of people) in your video, you’ll need a good lavalier microphone, natural light from a window, and a tripod. Sound, lighting, and camera stability are key in creating a quality video.



10 Easy Ways to Be Creative Every Day

It makes me so happy to look back on old happy journals. They have been a light throughout my life. I love journaling but these journals are the BEST!

Fostering Creativity: 12 Strategies to Boost Creative Skills

This is partly because creativity helps individuals adapt to uncertainty and solve problems as they arise. Research has also suggested that creativity – as a component of the personality factor “openness to experience” – is a better predictor of an extended lifespan than intelligence or overall openness to experience (Turiano, Spiro, & Mroczek, 2012).

In the following article, we explore what creativity is and how personal creativity can be fostered. We discuss creativity in the classroom and workplace. We touch on creativity in art and music. We also note the intriguing connection between nighttime and creativity.

Before you continue, we thought you might like to download our three Strengths Exercises for free. These detailed, science-based exercises will help you or your clients realize your unique potential and create a life that feels energized and authentic.

I want to be more creative this year, and am bookmarking this post because I need to hear it daily! I

Coloring completely counts as a creative activity. I mean, it’s not a sport (or is it?) Print out a coloring sheet, or toss a small coloring book in your purse for on the go, and you’re halfway there. For a grown-up spa experience, diffuse some restful essential oils, put your feet up, and color away.

I admittedly like to read cookbooks. (Jamie Oliver and Canal House are favorites.) Cooking isn’t my favorite thing in the world, but I admire those who do love it. (Yes, I’m talking to you, mom.) That said, I do like trying new recipes. Many of my current culinary loves are because I decided to buy the ingredients for a strange-to-me recipe and try it. And now I’m in love. (Still can’t believe how many years I wasted not eating curries! So sad . . .)

Eat a new food.

Similar to trying a new recipe, but this one is more simplistic. Give your taste buds a creative treat by choosing a brand new food (to you) at the grocery store. This is how I discovered the amazing wonder of Medjool dates. And 90% dark chocolate. (Okay, your food discoveries don’t have to be treats. ;)) What have you always passed by at the supermarket? Toss one in your cart this week. It might end up being your new favorite food!

How many of us have a decent camera that we know little to nothing about? Ahem. There are so many free and reasonably priced photography courses online these days that you could “go back to school” and learn how to use your amazing camera in a very short time. Or if you have a photographer husband, you could just ask him. 😉 Either way, you’ll be able to document your world and have a record that better represents what you want to say through pictures.

9) Keep a doodle journal at your desk.

Are you a visual thinker? If so, you might find it hard to find a direction with your ideas when you’re limited to the four corners of your screen. Change your routine and grab a pencil and paper to let your ideas free form in a more physical outlet. A blank sheet of paper or whiteboard may just be the best outlet to allow you to organize your thought process into one space.

According to Sunni Brown, author of The Doodle Revolution, “Even if you’re just scribbling in the margins, you’re lighting up different networks in your brain and when you do that, you’re engaging different information.”

Creating visual maps of all your different thoughts allows you to see the relationship between your ideas. Physically writing it down takes your ideas a step further and forces you to put them into words and physical shapes. If you can see your thought process, it will be easier to understand the direction you’ll want to go in.

10) Unwind by watching funny content.

Have you hit the point in your creativity block where you’re spending hours watching cat videos? Turns out those cat videos may actually be helpful . Research shows there’s a strong c orrelation between humor and creativity. A laugh can actually bring you closer to those moments of inspiration. Humor also puts you in a better mood , allowing you to think more freely and better solve creative problems.

Need a way to hone in on your work without zoning out? A lthough there’s been a lot of debate over whether listening to music will actually increase your intelligence over time (a theory often called the Mozart Effect) , there are still productivity benefits to tuning in. Listening to music can help you focus on whatever task you’re currently doing. It can also put you in a better mood, and even calm your nerves if you’re feeling anxious.

Certain forms of music can help channel your creativity better than others and tune out the noises of the office. While music with extreme changes of pace or lyrics can be distracting, ambient music can help increase processing levels and and promote creative thinking.

One new practice can work for you differently over time if you start to get bored of it. If you ever start to feel a practice has become too routine for you, revisit this post to try out another idea.



Search Engine Marketing (SEM): What It Is & How to Do It Right

The image states the importance of SEO and Search engine marketing in web

The Ultimate Guide To Search Engine Marketing (SEM) In 2022

When was the last time you needed to buy a product? Chances are you turned to a search engine such as Google to start your research. The companies you see first paid to get their listing at the top—they’ll be marked as ads. This is search engine marketing (SEM) in a nutshell. Read on to learn how SEM can help your business grow and where to get started.

Search engine marketing (SEM) refers to the practice of improving how customers find your product or service on a search engine (such as Google or Bing) through paid advertising. SEM once referred to both paid and organic advertising, but it is now used to refer to paid advertising alone.

Why Is SEM Important?

SEM is used by small, medium and enterprise businesses to get in front of potential customers at the exact time they are looking for the product or service you offer. It’s also a nonintrusive form of advertising as a potential customer is actively searching for similar services you provide. SEM is also cost-efficient for advertisers because they only pay each time someone clicks on their ad (this is often called pay-per-click, or PPC, in online marketing).

Who Should Use SEM?

Anyone with a product they want to sell online can benefit from SEM. Plus, these campaigns are easy to target and measure. “The best way to think about [SEM] is starting with the premise: a user goes to a search engine with a question in mind. If you can provide that answer—and it’s profitable for you to do so—you can benefit from SEM,” Michele Dappert, Senior Media Specialist at Planit, told Forbes Advisor.

Benefits of SEM

  • Highly intent-driven. SEM enables you to meet customers as they search for the products and services you are offering. “You’re reaching people in ‘market’—for whatever reason—at exactly the moment they are looking for an answer or solution. Capturing lower-funnel activity means you can ‘nudge’ someone to purchase your product or service without first convincing them of a need,” Dappert explained.
  • Visible, fast. SEM is an easy and quick way for newer businesses to get started. “When you are a newer product in a crowded field, targeted SEM campaigns allow you to show up immediately next to more established competitors, getting your name out there with their coattails,” Dappert said.
  • Real time, measurable. SEM allows you to see the ratio of people who click on your ad compared to those who buy your product or service and make changes accordingly. “Anyone who has a clearly defined goal—whether that be increased website sales, lead generation form-fills or increased blog readership—can use SEM to quickly measure increased traffic to the destination where people can complete that goal. And if you see a campaign isn’t working, it’s easy to turn that tactic off immediately and reallocate dollars without being set in a sunk cost,” Dappert said.
  • Targeted. SEM also allows you to get very specific about the potential customers you want to target. “SEM dollars are spent at the keyword level. But any campaign can be geo-targeted, device-targeted, flighted for certain times of day or seasons and is, in general, a way to expand your reach to a target profile without spending too much (or relying on cookies),” Dappert explained.


Many factors determine which websites rank highest in organic search, including relevant keywords, the overall quality of the website content and the number of backlinks (how many other websites link to yours). Increasing SEO requires an upfront investment of time and effort, but once a website begins to rank high, the traffic directed to the web page is free. On the other hand, SEM advertisers are paying for each click. Read our guide to the best SEO software for small businesses in 2022.


Both SEO and SEM should be fundamental parts of your online marketing strategy. SEO is a powerful way to drive evergreen traffic at the top of the funnel, while search engine advertisements are a highly cost-effective way to drive conversions at the bottom of the funnel.

Keywords are the foundation of search engine marketing. As users enter keywords (as part of search queries) into search engines to find what they’re looking for, it should come as little surprise that keywords form the basis of search engine marketing as an advertising strategy.

SEM Keyword Research

First, you need to identify keywords that are relevant to your business and that prospective customers are likely to use when searching for your products and services. One way to accomplish this is by using WordStream’s Free Keyword Tool.

best keyword research tools: wordstream free keyword tool

In addition to helping you find keywords you should be bidding on, thorough keyword research can also help you identify negative keywords – search terms that you should exclude from your campaigns. Negative keywords aren’t terms with negative connotations, but rather irrelevant terms that are highly unlikely to result in conversions. For example, if you sell ice cream, you might want to exclude the keyword “ice cream recipes”, as users searching for ice cream recipes are unlikely to be in the market for your product.

This concept is known as search intent, or the likelihood that a prospect will complete a purchase or other desired action after searching for a given term. Some keywords are considered to have high commercial intent, or a strong indication that the searcher wants to buy something. Examples of high commercial intent keywords include:

Keywords and Account Structure

Logical keyword grouping and account structure can help you achieve higher click-through rates, lower costs-per-click, and generally stronger overall performance, and keyword research can help you think about how to best structure your account.

google ads account structure overview

Ad campaigns can, and should in many cases, focus on similar products or services. For example, if you run a hardware store, one ad campaign could focus exclusively on autumnal products such as leaf blowers, rakes, and leaf bags, whereas another might focus on power tools and so on.

Ad groups allow for each campaign to be further subcategorized for relevance. In our hardware store example, one ad group could be for different types of rakes or varying models of leaf blowers. For the power tools campaign, one ad group might focus on power drills, while another could focus on circular saws. This level of organization might take slightly longer to set up initially, but the rewards – namely higher CTRs at lower cost – make this effort worthwhile in the long run.

How to Build an Effective SEM Strategy

SEM allows you to place an ad in front of users that are in the right phase of the marketing funnel. In other words, customers who are ready to convert. But to ensure that your search marketing campaign will have the highest ROI, you’ll need to target the right keywords, as well as watch out for a few more things.

What Google Looks for in Ad Auctions

The maximum bid refers to Google’s automated bidding strategies, and you have full control over it. The same is true for ad extensions that might impact the performance of your ad. The Quality Score, however, is assigned to you by Google and it’s the reason why your ad only wins auctions for relevant queries.


The Quality Score makes it so that if your ad matches too many irrelevant and generic queries, the costs of your paid search will go up exponentially without yielding the results you hoped for. This damages your ROI and gives off the wrong message to networks like Google.

How to Create a Solid Ad for Your SEM Strategy on Google

If you choose highly relevant keywords, you will win auctions for very well-placed ads at a lower price than your competitors, even if they choose a higher maximum bid. That’s because your Quality Score is higher, meaning you’ve understood the end-user better than your competition.

How to Build an Effective SEM Strategy: Best Practices

One way to sharpen up the targeting of your ad is to craft highly relevant Ad Groups. This means filtering out all keywords unrelated to your business. The PPC Keyword Tool is the easiest way to optimize Google Ads campaigns.

This tool not only supports you during the keyword research but also helps you determine search intent and the right volume/cost ratio. Explore the Recommendations in the tool and clean up your keywords list, which will remove less profitable opportunities.

PPC Keyword Tool Recommendations image 1

Use the PPC Keyword Tool to organize your keywords at both the campaign and ad group levels. But don’t forget to set up negative keywords! These are terms that you can mark as irrelevant if you don’t think they’ll lead to conversions.

PPC Keyword Tool Recommendations image 3

You can also use the Keyword Magic Tool to find more keywords, adding them to Keyword Manager and moving them to the PPC Keyword Tool afterward. In order to get the most out of the keywords you choose to target, make sure you add them to the PPC Keyword tool as a final step before setting up your campaign in Google Ads.

Get Rid of Duplicates in Your Keyword List

In the PPC Keyword Tool, you can store negative keyword lists that are valid both at the ad campaign level and at the group level, so you can run multiple ads for the same campaign without creating the same list of keywords repeatedly. To avoid any competition between groups, you can also use the cross-group negatives function.

PPC Keyword Tool Recommendations image 6

The same is true also for removing duplicates from regular keyword lists. Click on the “Remove duplicates” button on the top-right corner and the tool will automatically present you with the newest duplicates it detected. All you’ve got to do is delete them.

PPC Keyword Tool Recommendations image 7

Narrow Down Your SEM Strategy with Laser-focused Keywords

The possibilities with the PPC Keyword Tool are almost endless. That‘s because it supports you during the difficult task of refining your keyword lists with several filters and metrics. In particular, we made sure you could:

PPC Keyword Tool Recommendations image 13

Search Engine Marketing Remote Targeting

The essential purpose of ad campaigns is to target search ads to a narrow audience to maximize conversions. Therefore, it becomes necessary to display your ads for users looking for vendors who offer products or services similar to your business. The key point to remember is to probe for users who would likely do business with you.

We elaborate on the ad campaign structure in this section. You will learn how to organize and create campaigns. All you need to do is group themes and keywords relevant to your niche to start a campaign within your registered account.


Every campaign shares a distinct goal, budget, bidding strategy, and targeting settings as the topmost level within an account. You may also have options for group-related campaigns. This grouping may be based on the brand’s products/services/target audience/promotion type, etc. For instance, weight loss campaign for young adults and inch loss campaign for obese teenagers can be grouped under a single theme Youngsters.

2. Ad groups

3. Keywords

The Take Away

Search engines are a great way to find business online. They offer “passive” marketing approaches for those who don’t want to get into “active marketing”. SEO can be incredibly powerful, but it’s often too slow for someone who needs clients today (rather than in six months’ time) to be a good marketing strategy when you launch your business. It’s cheap (though it’s not free – your time is worth money too), and it can be very effective in the medium to long term.

SEM, on the other hand, costs money but can deliver very rapid results. Your website must be optimized to make sales or at least drive a customer to get in touch (GIT – in marketing terms) so you can make a sale. You should approach SEM with care and make sure you completely understand how much money you have exposed at any one time. Start slow and evaluate your results.



How to Answer Why Are You the Best Person for the Job?

How to answer why are you the best candidate for this position?

How to Answer, “Why Are You the Best Person for This Job?”

In this video, Jenn, a certified career coach, will explain why employers ask this question, the three pieces of information they’re listening for in an answer, and the best strategy for preparing for this question.

During job interviews, employers typically ask various questions to ensure you’re a strong fit for the role. One common question to expect is, “Why are you the best candidate for this job?” Preparing a compelling response to this interview question can position you as an ideal candidate and help you get the job you want. In this article, we discuss why employers ask, “Why are you the best person for this job?” outline how to answer this interview question, and show several examples to guide you in preparing your response.

Why do interviewers ask, “Why are you the best person for this job?”

Interviewers ask, “Why are you the best person for this job?” for various reasons. They often want to identify what makes you unique and qualified for the job. They also ask this question to check whether you fully understand what the position entails and what they’re looking for in an ideal candidate. Inquiring why you’re the best person for a job can help interviewers assess your confidence and ability to perform the expected duties. From the answer you provide, they can also see how you handle workplace challenges. Other ways potential employers may ask this question include:

1. Review the job description

Understanding your expected job duties and the required qualifications to perform them is typically the first step to preparing an effective answer. Take time to read the job posting to find the skills, experience level, and education the hiring organization values in a candidate. Then, evaluate these criteria with your qualifications when explaining why you’re the best person for the job.

2. Research the hiring organization

Next, read about the company to understand more about its ideal candidate. Researching the hiring organization can also help you gain more insights into the organization’s work culture and current employees. You can check the company’s website, social media profiles, and publications or press releases for its mission and goals. Learning about the company can help you identify the personality traits it values and check whether its core values align with yours. Core values are beliefs, principles, and behaviours that guide actions.

3. Identify relevant qualities for the role

Once you understand the requirements, examine your strengths, such as skills, certifications, and professional experience, that you can use in the position. You can pick as many as seven qualities related to the position. By combining several relevant attributes in your answer, you can provide a thoughtful response to, “Why are you the best candidate for this job?”

4. Use quantifiable examples

When describing your strengths and accomplishments, ensure you use examples that the interviewer can measure. While you can mention that you earned specific qualifications, providing practical examples can often be more convincing. For example, suppose you’re discussing your communication skills. You can mention a situation you applied effective communication to solve a workplace problem. Similarly, if leading others is your strength, you can present examples of how you applied this skill at work.

5. Practise your response in advance

Preparing your answer can help you demonstrate confidence during interviews. You can organize a mock interview and practise your response with a colleague, friend, family member, or mentor. Ask for their feedback on the answer you provide to determine ways to present a more convincing response.

How to Answer “Why Are You the Best Person for the Job?”

There are many ways you can answer this question. The first way is to explain how your personality or personal traits make you an ideal candidate. To do that, take the time before the interview to carefully match your qualifications to those listed in the job posting. Be prepared to explain why you’re a solid match for the job.

A second way to answer is to emphasize your unique skills. If you have skills that make you a strong candidate (especially if not many people have those skills), mention these. The skills the employer is seeking may also be listed in the job posting. If not, look at similar jobs to see what criteria employers are looking for.

Another option is to show the employer that what you have accomplished in your previous roles qualify you for this one. Share examples of your achievements that relate to the job for which you’re interviewing.

4 Ways to Answer: Why Are You the Best Person for the Job?

Examples of the Best Answers

Example Answer #1

My previous job working as a receptionist provided me with the ideal experience for this position. For five years, I developed many of the skills required for this job, including answering phones and email, processing payments, and entering data on multiple computer programs.

Why It Works: This response is effective because the candidate goes into specifics in listing the essential skill set she can bring to her new employer. Ideally, she has also emphasized these skills because she realized from reading the job posting that these talents were among the employer’s most “preferred qualifications.”

Example Answer #2

My skill set is a perfect match for the job requirements. In particular, my sales skills and managerial experience make me an ideal candidate for the position. For example, at my last job, I managed a sales team of five employees, and we had the top sales record of our company branch. I can bring my successes and experiences to this job.

Why It Works: Not only does this interviewee mention his important skills, but he also alludes to his previous leadership responsibilities and his quantifiable success (a “top sales record”) in his previous job.

Example Answer #3

I have the ability to find my niche within a group and support everyone’s efforts. For example, my last job involved a lot of team projects. I was always able to recognize my teammates’ skills, and delegated tasks that fit each person’s skills. I know this job involves lots of teamwork and group projects, and I know this is a work style in which I excel.

Why It Works: This is a great example of how to effectively use the STAR interview response technique, in which you structure your answer to describe a past situation, your task, your action, and the result. Here, the candidate uses this technique to also point out that she is aware of the employer’s company culture and focus on collaborative teamwork, showing how her own experience aligns with these priorities.

Example Answer #4

I am a self-motivated person who is willing to go above and beyond on any project, and to learn valuable skills on my own time. For example, I taught myself five computer programming languages in college, simply out of a passion to learn how to code. I know you are looking for a self-motivated computer technician with both skills and passion, and I am that person.

Why It Works: This job candidate showcases the broad skill set that many of his competitors for the position might not have: his knowledge of five computer programming languages. He is also able, in his response, to point out his personal initiative and enthusiasm for his work.

Confidence is key

Doing a background check of the company allows you to prepare in advance, which ensures that you state your answer confidently and clearly, from the choice of words to tone of your voice.

Focus on your personality or personal traits that make you unique and the best fit for the job. Also, you can emphasize skills that are specific to you, because not many people possess them, and they are sure to make you the ideal candidate for the position.

Consider mentioning your great interpersonal skills or leadership skills, and your ability to resolve conflict amicably. Not everyone possesses these skills, therefore if you can use them to your advantage. But don’t exaggerate!

Although, the objective is to sell yourself and prove that you are the best candidate, don’t compare yourself to other candidates. Just emphasize your uniqueness positively and do not attack or demean other candidates. Understand that everyone who made it to the interview position is just as qualified as you are and deserve to be respected.

What to avoid: Mistakes candidates make when asked this question

Mistakes candidates make when asked this question

Landing a job after an interview is tough! Therefore, don’t sabotage the chance to get your dream job because of small, silly mistakes that you can easily avoid. This can’t be reiterated enough, Practice!

Relax! Don’t start talking about where you and your family went for a vacation. Focus on the compelling points that illustrate your suitability for the position. Keep your answer concise by limiting each question to at least 1-2 minutes. Also, practice in advance.

Don’t be modest:
This is your opportunity to sell yourself and convince the hiring manager why you’re the suitable candidate for the job, so don’t under-represent yourself.

Give general answers:
Don’t give vague answers. Include your personality in the solutions you provide. Think your answers through, try as much as possible to discuss traits, skills, and abilities that make you unique. Be as specific as possible, you don’t want your answers to sound rehearsed or memorized. Yes, use the information here as a guide, but don’t memorize it.

While this may be an essential interview question, not all hiring managers use it. Therefore, despite your preparation, you may have to look for opportunities during the interview to sell yourself using the mentioned key points.

When answering this question, remember that this is an opportunity to highlight your best skills and convince the interviewer that you are the ideal candidate for the job. Therefore, base your answer on prior industrial experience, hard and soft skills, accomplishments, accolades, and education.



How Much Does It Cost To Self-Publish?

In this quote, Alex Azoury shares that freelancers vary in expertise and cost to create an eBook.

What are the main costs of self-publishing?

Professional editing

Most authors recommend using a professional editor in order to make your book the best it can be, but the cost will depend on the level of your writing, how long the book is, how much editing it needs and the editor you choose. Range: $300 – $2000.

In my own experience, editing is most expensive at the beginning of your writing career as you learn the craft. But it’s also one of the best investments you can make in order to become a better writer, and I continue to use editors for all of my books. Click here or the image below if you need a pro editor.


Professional cover design

Most authors would also recommend paying a professional cover designer for a book cover. DIY just won’t cut it in this competitive online environment and your book cover is the most powerful marketing asset you have. Range: $50 – $300.

book cover design


book formatting

Remember, the actual publishing part is FREE on all the ebook retailers and also for print on Createspace. It’s the preparation of the manuscript and files that costs.

author website tutorial

If you choose to use an author services company to help you do these tasks, it’s likely to cost a lot more, so weigh up what your goals are and what you’re willing to learn to do yourself before you commit.

Cost of Producing Your Self-Published eBook

There are several costs required to self-publish an ebook. You can write virtually anywhere – pen and paper, Microsoft Word, Google Docs. You can use a laptop or even your cell phone. Some writers choose to invest in writing software like Novlr, Scrivener, or LivingWriter. You can even hire a ghostwriter. But because you can write without any investment, let’s consider the costs without including writing software. There are several other production costs you will need to consider:

Editing and Proofreading

Hiring an editor and proofreader (or an all-in-one editing service) is one of the most important investments you can make. Yes, some authors do successfully edit their own works, but they are few and far between. You need a good editor and proofer to:

How Much Do Editors and Proofreaders Cost?

When you’re investing in an editing and proofreading service, you will find a wide variety of prices. There is no other service for authors in which the adage “You Get What You Pay For” applies more. Ideally, you’ll find an editor who will partner with you for an extended period of time over multiple ebooks and help you define and develop your style and voice – or at least get to know your style and voice well enough to preserve it throughout the editing process.

Cost can be per word, per page, or flat rate. Average rates are .08-.12 cents per word, $9-18 per page, or a flat rate based on the total project. So an average novel of 120 pages might cost 800,500-5000,000 for a great editing job, and it will be worth every penny.

Choosing the Right Editor

Your chosen editor should fit within your budget. They should be familiar with your genre, and be able to meet your needs and your timeline. However, unrealistic timelines can result in poor quality publications. We’ll talk more about that, but one of the benefits of self-publishing is that you are in control. You are not working on a publisher’s deadline. Therefore, you can give your ebook the time it needs to be done properly.

Formatting Your eBook

When it comes to formatting your ebook, you have several choices. You can do it yourself, but this can be time-consuming and prevent you from focusing on writing. You can use online or downloadable software, but you may discover imperfections in automated formatting that require manual adjustments. Or, you can hire a formatting service. Some all-in-one editorial services include formatting in their service or offer it as an add-on. Before you format your ebook, determine where you’ll be distributing it and what format(s) are required by your distributor.

There are three main formats for ebooks – .pdf, .mobi, and .epub. In most cases, .epub is the most widely accepted format. However, there are times when you’ll need either .pdf or .mobi – and for widest distribution, you may need them all. Sometimes, the cost will be higher because of the complexity of what you are publishing. Most ebook formatting services will require that you request a quote. On average, you can expect to pay from $50-$250.

Step 4: Designing the Assets

The design cost depends on the level of commitment you want to put into the aesthetics of your eBook. Do you want every page to be expertly laid out with full-color graphics, or will an eye-catching cover page suffice?

Alex Azoury again: “Your design includes your eBook cover, various elements within the book, and the final page. Someone will need to decide on the fonts and color used. All the headlines, paragraphs and text need to be formatted so that your book appears professionally produced.”

According to James Pollard, Founder of TheAdvisorCoach.com, “Some people will recommend going to a cheap site like Fiverr, but I’ve found that you get what you pay for. I suggest hiring a professional designer either directly or through a freelancing site.”

In this James Pollard quote, he explains that going to a freelancing site or directly to the freelancer is the best bet when creating an eBook.

This level of premium design may cost you a lot more. Pollard estimates that for a fully produced, graphically rich cover design, it may cost as much as $500 for a final product that makes your eBook stand out.

That’s just for the basics, though. If you want to take time to create graphics, tables, charts and other visual elements, that will require more design time. An eBook with robust visuals can cost significantly more and may even creep into the thousands.

Do It Yourself?

This all assumes that you opt to have a designer create your eBook. While usually that’s quicker and can produce a better result, there are a number of tools that can help you create your own eBook design for free.

Step 5: Repurposing and Distributing Your eBook

  1. Create an audiobook version and make it available on services that offer listening like Spotify, iTunes, Google Play, Scribd, and others.
  2. Format it for Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) and make it available on Amazon. You can make it available for free here, but many published authors earn significant revenue by charging for their eBooks
  3. Format your eBook in the ePub format for wider accessibility. This is the standard format used by eBook readers such as Kindle, Kobo, iBook, etc. There are many free and paid tools that can help you do this. This will also allow you to sell your eBook on marketplaces like Google Play and iBook.
  4. Break it up into several blog posts and post it on your blog

So, what’s the final cost of creating an eBook? As mentioned, the total investment depends on what you have available to as well as the level of depth and quality you’re aiming for.

A good ballpark for an average eBook would be around $3,000 dollars if you hire freelancers for everything. But, if you have access to some resources needed like existing content, design support, editing support, etc, the total cost can be a lot lower. Similarly, if you need an exceptional level of quality, tons of research, and need to hire an expert to write it, you could be looking at significantly more.

The amount you actually budget creating your finished product should depend on what you expect to gain from it when you leverage it to your selected market. According to James Pollard, “I tie it directly to a revenue metric in my business because I view it as an investment. I have no problem spending $3,000 to create an eBook that will generate $30,000 in sales over the next year.”

To understand and track the ROI of your eBook, the best way is to determine what the value of each lead who downloads your eBook is. To do this you can work backwards through your funnel. Here’s an example: