How to Host Webinars Online Using YouTube Live

by Deepak Kanakaraju on August 22, 2016

If you want to host webinars online for your audience, YouTube’s Live Streaming Events is one of the easiest and most reliable ways. I recently conducted a webinar for Razorpay, and it was a seamless experience.

webinar-yt

I have tried conducting webinars on GoToMeeting, GoToWebinar and a few more webinar platforms before. GoToMeeting is suitable for small audiences and more focused towards meetings & training sessions than broadcasting webinars. In GoToMeeting anyone can un-mute themselves and talk during your presentation. GoToWebinar is built for webinars but it is extremely costly, especially when your audience size becomes large.

YouTube Live beats them all in terms of performance and price (it’s free!). And best of all, you can have unlimited people watching the webinar and their servers can handle it!

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UpGrad Digital Marketing Program Review

by Deepak Kanakaraju on August 11, 2016

UpGrad has recently launched a digital marketing program. UpGrad is a company cofounded by Ronnie Screwvala, an entrepreneur who built and sold UTV Movies to Disney. He is also an investor in some of the most promising startups in India.

upgrad-digitalmarketing program

I have been getting a lot of queries recently about the UpGrad Digital Marketing Certification Program. So I thought it would be a good idea to write a review that exhaustively covers various aspects of this program.

From my perspective, UpGrad is different because they focus on imparting a holistic knowledge in the marketing arena than just focusing on specific aspects of digital marketing.

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When it comes to digital marketing, everyone talks about the various channels of advertising such as AdWords, Facebook etc. Then people talk about metrics like CPC, Conversions etc. But one of the most important metrics that I see being constantly missed out is LTV – Life Time Value of your customers.

customer ltv

The Life time value means the total revenue that your customers are going to bring to your business over a period of time. “Life” here can be a year, two years or five years depending on the business. In certain categories like automobiles, a customer remains loyal to a brand for as high as 15-20 years or even more.

This metric is so important because it determines how much you can spend on digital marketing (or any marketing channel) to acquire one customer. Without knowing your LTV, you are just shooting in the dark, and you will have no idea if your business is going to fail or succeed.

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Razorpay Online Payment Gateway Review

by Deepak Kanakaraju on June 21, 2016

If you want to start a web based business and sell something online, you need to have the ability to accept payments online. To ensure maximum revenue, you have to have the maximum payment options available for your customers. In India, the major online payment modes are net-banking, cards and wallets.

Razorpay LogoThere are more than 55 banks in India which support net-banking payments. If you are a startup company, it is not practical for a small company to partner with 55+ banks in India, the various card networks and the wallet companies. You do not have the bandwidth, the time or the resources to setup a payments infrastructure.

That’s why it is advisable to sign up with a payment gateway aggregator like Razorpay. Once you sign up for an account at a payment gateway, you will be able to offer almost all the possible payment methods available to your customers.

Razorpay charges 2% flat fee on every transaction. This is called TDR – Transaction Discount Rate. This is a very nominal and marginal fee that you have to pay and it saves you time, money and accounting hassles.

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The Secret to Successful Content Marketing

by Deepak Kanakaraju on June 5, 2016

Many people think that content marketing is just about setting up a blog and publishing articles in it. Sometimes they do it, but then realize that it doesn’t work that way. Content marketing has two main parts: creating interesting content and marketing it. You cannot stop with content creation and expect results.

content marketing

One of the biggest mistakes that people make in content marketing is that they create content on topics that they are interested in, instead of creating content that their audience may be interested in.

If you need to catch a fish, you need to give worms as the bait. You cannot give chocolate as bait just because you like chocolates. You need to give people what they need to attract them to you.

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Have you ever wondered how bloggers and other self employed professionals get in the news? If you haven’t done any research so far, you probably thought that it happens by luck or chance. It does happen by chance once in a while, but there are some proactive things that you can do to get featured in the mainstream media.

Getting featured in the news or media gives you authority and backlinks. If a newspapers covers a story on you, your authority and credibility among your followers skyrockets. Also, you get backlinks which helps in SEO.

Some newspaper websites have a policy not to give backlinks, but your brandname gets mentioned and search engines track brand mentions as well. Your author rank will go up when you have brand mentions.

So how can you, as a blogger or an independent professional get featured in the news? Sometimes journalists from reputed publications will get in touch with you to help with their story.

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New Google AdWords Layout to be Rolled Out in 2016-2017

by Deepak Kanakaraju on March 30, 2016

According to the recent announcement from Google, AdWords layout is going to change soon. This is the first major change after 15 years of AdWords. The new layout will be rolled out in phases and it may take as long as an year or two before the migration is complete.

adwords

The new design will mimic the design elements in other Google products such as Maps, Gmail and Google+. According to Google, the new layout will help you make changes faster and get data and reports with less ambiguity.

Once the layout change is implemented, there is nothing that you need to change. The basic structure of the campaigns will remain the same and your existing campaigns, ad groups and ads will continue to run as it has always been.

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A few months Facebook had launched Lead Ads. With Lead Ads, you can generate leads on mobile without asking your users to fill up a form in a landing page. Facebook picks the information that the user has already given to Facebook and pre-populates the form. Users have to just click on the Submit button to send their Name, Email ID and Phone number to you.

fb lead ads

You can read more about Facebook Lead Ads here in the blog post that I have published previously. However, there were huge limitations with how the data can be handled.

The leads can be downloaded only from the Publishing Tools page as a CSV file and one had to export the leads to a CRM or a mailing platform manually. This doesn’t work for marketers because most of the communication is done via automated follow-up emails.

A few tools had come up in the middle to solve this problem. For example, ConnectLeads, a third party software exported the Leads from Facebook Lead Ads to any email marketing tool of your choice. ConnectLeads is an expensive tool and it is obselete now.

Now you can export your Facebook Leads in real time using Zapier. I use Zapier to automate a lot of marketing tasks. For example, I even trigger a follow-up SMS using Zapier.

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Facebook Canvas Ads: Everything You Need to Know

by Deepak Kanakaraju on February 29, 2016

Facebook has something new for advertisers and brands. They have launched the Facebook Canvas. Canvas is a form of an ad which fills a need in the market that other types of ads have been unable to fulfil.

ad-canvas

It supports full screen on mobile devices and provides a better experience for the users when they want to view an ad and learn more about the brand.

According to Facebook, “Canvases open from Facebook ads in News Feed to reveal a full-screen experience where advertisers can use a mix of video, still images, text and call-to-action buttons to build beautiful and effective brand and product experiences on mobile.”

Facebook Canvas opens up like a website on landing page after someone clicks on a standard looking Facebook ad. In this case, all the content is hosted on Facebook servers and they make sure that the page loads as fast as possible.

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How to Share Facebook Custom Audiences Across Ad Accounts?

by Deepak Kanakaraju on February 21, 2016

In the previous articles on Facebook advertising I have explained about custom audiences and how they work. But did you know that you can share custom audiences between Facebook ad accounts?

share custom audiences

The feature is not enabled by default in your Facebook ads account and it can be enabled only by contacting Facebook’s support.

This can be done only if you have admin access to both the ad accounts. I first started exploring this feature to check if I can tap into the audience of my fellow bloggers.

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