New Mindjet Mind Map Dashboard Website Template

Posted May 12th @ 4:15 am by Roger C. ParkerPrint

My Website Planner mind map template is the latest addition to Mindjet’s MindManager Dashboard series.

My Mindjet Website Planner mind map template offers an easy way for entrepreneurs, marketers, and web professionals manage the growing complexity of information–including mission-critical usernames, passwords, and size requirements for graphics–needed to manage a firm’s online presence.

Often, additional user names and passwords are required for numerous ancillary services, such as analytics and reporting software, competitive tracking, and third-party add-ins and widgets that enhance blog and website performance.

Advantages of the Mindjet Dashboard Approach

There are numerous advantages to using a mind map as a Dashboard offering immediate access to a large amounts of information.

  • Fast Access to complex data. A mind map like the Website Planner Dashboard speeds access by consolidating a lot of information in one location, where information can be located at a glance. Rather than scrolling through rows in a spreadsheet, logos and icons can speed access.
  • Convenient, secure, and up-to-date. Consolidating access important information in a single document makes information easier to access, easier to share, and easier to update when necessary.
  • Security advantages.  Access and consistency can be enhanced by placing the Website Planner mind map on a firm’s central server, or using a cloud server like Mindjet Connect. Access to the mind map can also be password protected, limiting access as desired.

Simple solution for convenience and security

As businesses of all sizes become more web- enabled and web-dependent, it’s becoming more and more apparent that more and more information is needed to maintain and update blogs websites and social media sites, as well as the services that go along with them.

As our reliance on more online vendors grows, in an atmosphere of hackers and identity thieves, we have to simultaneously choose and protect our usernames and passwords with more care and change them more often. Consolidating this valuable information in a single password-protected location can be an important first line of defense.

In addition, as graphic images become a more and more expected part of today’s social media visual landscape as the tools–like Canva–help non-designers produce better and better graphics, there is need for access for standards and specifications for branding our images with consistent colors and fonts.

How could a Website Planner Template help you?

After downloading the Mindjet Website Planner mind map template and learning more, share your comments, concerns, and questions. Mindjet Website Planner Dashboard save time, protect your usernames and passwords, and add consistency to your visuals? And, while you’re there, check out these other Dashboards, such as the Editorial Calendar, Expert Tracker, #Hashtag Tracker, Podcast Planner, and Presentation Planner.

Ann Handley’s Journey to Everybody Writes

Posted April 30th @ 3:12 pm by Roger C. ParkerPrint

Click to hear Ann Handley discuss her bestselling book, Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content.

This week’s interview with Ann Handley was informative, revealing, and just plain fun. Ann has an encyclopedic knowledge of authors, copywriting, and the overlap between writing and content marketing, and she obviously enjoys sharing writing tips for today’s marketers.

Ann has been writing and editing articles about online marketing for over 15 years.

Presently, Ann is Chief Content Officer of the Marketing Profs, which has hundreds of thousands of followers around the world.  She is also a monthly contributor to Entrepreneur Magazine.

Interview takeaways

During our interview, Ann Handley spoke as clearly and energetically as she writes. She’s informed, spirited, and candid in her speaking as in her writing.
Discussion topics included topics like;

We also discussed some f the implications of Chapter 11, Humor Comes on the Rewrite. It’s Everybody Write’s shortest chapter–just two paragraphs! But, I feel it’s one of the most important.

After you download or listen to the recording of my interview with Ann Handley, share your comments, takeaways, and questions below.

Do You Have Any Questions for Ann Handley?

Posted April 27th @ 6:07 am by Roger C. ParkerPrint

Join my free interview with Ann Handley, author of Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good ContentDo you have any writing or marketing questions you’d like to ask Ann Handley, author of Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content?

I’ll be interviewing Ann Handley in a free teleseminar interview tomorrow, Tuesday, April 28, at 4 PM Eastern.

Tomorrow’s Author Thought Leader Interview offers you a unique opportunity to learn from one of today’s most popular authors and marketing voices. Ann will be sharing writing and content advice and tips, as well as her writing habits and rituals.

Positioning your book in a crowded field

Our call offers you a unique opportunity to learn from a top presenter and content marketing pioneer–who writes with exceptional clarity and warmth.

At the end of the call, there will be time for you to ask Ann your questions about writing and content marketing. (You can also submit your questions as comments before the call, as comments, below.)

Tips for positioning your book in a crowded field

If you’re an author, or a content marketer preparing topics in crowded fields, you’ll probably be especially interested in our discussion about book positioning. We’ll discussing how she successfully positioned Everybody Writes in a field with over 50,000 competing books.

A new topic, added since the rescheduled date of our original interview, is a discussion of the origins of her Writer’s GPS infographic based on the contents of Ann Handley’s Everybody Writes.

To attend my Ann Handley teleseminar interview

To attend tomorrow’s Published & Profitable interview with Ann Handley on Tuesday, April 28, at 4 PM Eastern, simply dial 605-475-6150 and enter PIN 513391.

Lessons from Adele Revella’s Buyer Personas {Mind Map}

Posted April 25th @ 10:42 pm by Roger C. ParkerPrint

Take your writing and content marketing to the next level with this free mind map of Adele Revella’s Buyer Personas.

Authors will see how a 3-part structure helps organize their ideas and position their books, so they can go deeper than competing books.

— Content marketers will gain a fresh appreciation for buyer personas and a discover a step-by-step approach to mastering one of content marketing’s most important competencies.

Buyer personas versus buyer profiles

Many content marketers mistake buyer profiles for buyer personas. But, there’s a crucial difference.

  • Buyer profiles are composites of buyer characteristics, like age, occupation, education, income, location, health, or marital status.
  • Buyer personas, as Adele Revella emphasizes throughout Buyer Personas, are far more complex, and capable of delivering greater rewards. They are far more personalized. They help marketers identify the triggers that open the door to favorable buying decisions.

As David Meerman Scott wrote in the Foreword to Buying Decisions:

Although the Internet has given us instant access to immense knowledge, even the most sophisticated applications of Big Data won’t reveal what you can learn by listening to your buyer’s stories.

Content marketing and stories

Content marketing success is all about stories; using the power of stories to engage and serve as a vehicle to communicate information. Each year sees increased emphasis placed on the role of storytelling in content marketing success.

Adele Revella has taken the power of story even further!

What Adele Revella has done in Buyer Powerson is to show content marketers that story is not only a vehicle, but is also a key research tool for identifying the content that will resonate with their clients and prospects.

A step-by-step action plan

For years, Adele has been redefining buyer personas for great content marketing productivity through her ebooks and blog posts on the Content Marketing Institute blog and her presentations and workshops like Content Marketing World. You can learn more at her Adele Revella’s Buyer Persona Institute website.

How to profit from the Buyer Persona mind map

Whether or not you’re a user of mind mapping software, you can view my Mindjet mind map Adele Revella’s Buyer Persona at Biggerplate.com. I created it using Mindjet’s MindManager.

  • If you’re not a MindManager user, you can explore the mind map online. You’ll be able to see how Adele Revella organized Buyer Personas into 3 parts and 11 chapters. You’ll be able to zoom in to explore the topics at greater magnification, or zoom out to appreciate the book’s overall organization.
  • If you are a MindManager user,  or you currently using a compatible mind mapping software program, you’ll be able to download the actual file. After downloading the file, you can use it to take notes while reading Buyer Personas or accessing the other resources available on Adele Revella’s website. (You can also use the file as a template for analyzing the structure of other popular marketing and business books.

Mind mapping and content marketing success

This mind map of Adele Revella’s Buyer Personas joins 39  other MindManager mind maps I’ve shared at Biggerplate. My goal is to encourage authors and content marketers to use mind maps to:

  • Study the structure of successful books by analyzing how successful authors have organized their books into sections and chapters.
  • Save time using mind maps to organize their own books and content marketing projects ideas before beginning to write
  • Use mind maps as learning tools by using mind maps to take notes while reading, attending conferences and workshops, or listening to podcasts.

For more information, see my articles and mind map templates on Mindjet’s Conspire blog. If you find them helpful, share your experiences as comments, below. And please share your questions and suggestions!

Can Your Book Pass This Simple Test? {Infographic}

Posted April 23rd @ 3:50 pm by Roger C. ParkerPrint

View the Writing GPS infographic based on Ann Handley’s Everybody Writes.

Then, simply ask yourself:

Can I create a similar infographic based on my book?

If you can’t immediately answer “Yes,” you should take a fresh look at your book and how effectively you have organized your ideas.

Structure and purpose

Thought leadership books–books written to position their authors as experts in their field–require a structure that instantly communicates their book’s purpose and the benefits readers will gain from their book.

The power of proof

When you view the complete Writer’s GPS infographic at a larger size, the 12 benefits of reading Ann Handley’s book are immediately visible.

In addition, each benefit is accompanied by proof in the form of concise “sound bites” of text. As a result, at a glance, prospective readers understand why they should buy the book, what they will learn, and how they will benefit.

Lessons from Everybody Writes

Ann Handley’s Everybody Writes is an excellent example of the type of nonfiction books that are popular today. It’s immediate Amazon Top 100 success, and its continuing brisk sales, is based on the:

  1. Quality of information that’s shared
  2. Depth, or quantity of information
  3. Tone, or the Author’s unique, conversational tone
  4. Structure, or the way information is organized

Everybody Writes contains 74 chapters and 9 tools organized into 9 parts. This organization is a key element in the book’s continuing success.

To learn more about Ann Handley’s Writing GPS

In addition to viewing the Writing GPS at large size, you can learn more about it by reading Ann Handley’s recent article, A Writing GPS: The Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Your Next Piece of Content [Infographic].

The article describes the origin of the infographic and the purpose of the Writing GPS infographic. In Ann’s words:

This GPS gets you from one place to another: from discombobulated thoughts to a coherent, cogent piece of writing that others can grok (and maybe love).

To Learn even more

For a different, but equally-revealing visual perspective of Everybody Writes, you can examine and explore the Biggerplate mind map of Everybody Writes that I created using Mindjet MindManager.

If you’re already a MindManager user, you can use my mind map to take notes while reading Everybody Writes.

As both the infographic and the MindManager mind map show, visual thinking plays a big role in writing success. Visually displaying the contents of your book reveals your book’s structure and purpose.

  • Visual thinking before you write your book helps you organize your ideas–no matter how complex your topic or the amount of detail  you intend to present.
  • Visual thinking helps you market and sell your book by displaying the benefits your book offers and the advice that you share.

Most important visual thinking helps you evaluate your book idea–whether it’s a new book or an existing book–and offers an easy way for you to compare your book to the competition in a whole new way.

How visible is your book’s structure and purpose?

Can your book pass the infographic test? Is the structure of your book hidden in your book’s table of contents, and the contents of each chapter, or can the contents and value of your book be displayed as clearly as the infographic and mind map of Ann Handley’s Everybody Writes? How can you use visual thinking to make your book easier to write and easier to sell? Share your comments, below.

You can also learn more by attending next week’s Published & Profitable interview with Ann Handley on Tuesday, April 28, at 4 PM Eastern. To join us, simply dial 605-475-6150 and enter PIN 513391. There will be an opportunity to ask questions at the end of the call.

How to Save Time Preparing Online Book Reviews

Posted April 15th @ 6:32 am by Roger C. ParkerPrint

Use this Free Book Review Planner worksheet helps you save time review books for Amazon.com, GoodReads, and blog postsfree Book Review Planner worksheet to save time preparing quality book reviews for your thought leadership content marketing.

It’s a great resource for creating blog posts and online book reviews on Amazon.com, Goodreads, and social media.

This Book Review Planner is for you, if:

-  You’re not using online book reviews to attract new followers and continually engage your market by positioning yourself as an expert in your field.

-  You’re concerned you may be spending too much time preparing online book reviews

You want to improve the quality of your book reviews and enjoy quick access to previously- published reviews.

The power of online book reviews

Online book reviews are one of the most powerful personal branding tools.

Thoughtful, well-written reviews communicate that you are a critical thinker and a thought  leader in your field.

Your visibility and credibility increases the more you post thoughtful and relevant book reviews.

Well-written online book reviews show that you are constantly learning, informed, and an effective communicator. The better the review, the more they position you as trusted resource. This is especially true when others consistently rate your reviews as helpful.

Book reviews and social media

Each review also offers an opportunity to promote your brand using links shared on social media. In many cases, links to your reviews can be automatically shared.

Book Review Planner benefits

I created my downloadable Book Review Planner for my own use, as well as for my clients to use evaluating nonfiction books. It’s benefits include:

  • Creates a structure. The worksheet provides a structure, or framework, for evaluating the key areas that help set helpful, relevant books apart from their competition. By listing the key review criteria in one place, my review planner reminds reviewers to address as many specifics as possible.
  • Ease of use. I intended the Book Review Planner to be printed and filled-out by hand. The worksheet is intended to be easily used, so you get in the habit of using it as often as necessary.
  • Faster starts and better quality. The Book Review Plannner turbo-charges your writing by providing an easily-filled in structure for organizing your ideas before you start to write. As a result, you’ll spend less time writing, and have more time left over for editing and proofing your reviews  before publishing them.

Tips for working with the Book Review Planner

  1. Download and print on 3-hole paper. This makes it easy to save your book reviews in a 3-ring binder, so you can easily review the books you’ve read.
  2. Get an early start. Rather than waiting until you’ve finished a book to begin thinking about reviewing it, have a copy of the worksheet by your side as you read. This reminds you to note as many of the key criteria as possible in mind while reading the book.
  3. Avoid over-complicating your review. Although I encourage you to rate each book from multiple aspects, the Book Review Planner–and its ratings–are intended as “shorthand” rather than scientific accuracy. Start by entering a score for each of the 11 criteria, based on the Scoring Suggestions at the top of the worksheet. Then, summarize your impressions by entering a Total score.
  4. Provide additional detail when appropriate. As you read each book, and reflect on the value and presentation of its ideas, feel free to share examples of topics you feel covered especially well, or that may not be as helpful as you desired. Exploring a few examples in greater detail, and supporting your ideas with specific references from various chapters, enhances your credibility as an expert in your field.
  5. Promote your reviews. After your review appears, share it’s URL on your blog and social media platforms.  Monitor your reviews, and–when appropriate–reply to comments by others. Acknowledge differing viewpoints, but avoid personal attacks.
  6. Build on your reviews. Although you should avoid copying and sharing your reviews verbatim in other locations, (your posts become the property of online hosts), you can refer to your reviews and their URLs in later compilations. Instead of copying and pasting, address the books from a fresh perspective or add new ideas in a different format. (Be sure to read each host’s terms of service, etc.)
  7. Share your comments with the authors. In addition to promoting your reviews via social media, when appropriate, feel free to share a link to your review with the authors. This is a courtesy most authors greatly appreciate.
  8. After your review is published, add the URL to the bottom of the Book Review Planner. This saves time access your reviews to monitor comments and ratings, as well as include your reviews as recommended resources in later ebooks or blog posts.

Share your experience!

Download a free, no obligation, copy of my Book Review Planner and use it before preparing your next book review.

Note: There’s no registration required! The Book Review Planner represents the type of pragmatic assistance I offer authors and content marketers looking for ways to maximize their writing productivity.

My #Book Title Tweet, the world’s first book about choosing nonfiction book titles, is another example of my concise, practical approach to writing and content marketing.

After downloading and using my Book Review Planner, share your experience using it when reviewing books. And, please let me know, as comments, below, if you’d like to see other types of writing, publishing, and content marketing checklists and planning worksheets.