How to Create Instagram Stories Ads for Traffic and Conversions

Do you use Instagram stories? Looking for ways to increase your conversions? Instagram Stories ads have expanded to include four objectives that let marketers drive specific goal-oriented conversions. In this article, you’ll discover how to use Instagram Stories ads to improve your marketing results. What Are Instagram Stories Ad Objectives? Instagram story ads play between […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

How to Create a Social Media Policy for Your Employees

Want to help your employees better engage on social media? Wondering how a social media policy can help? A social media policy gives your employees guidelines for interacting with customers and protecting their personal safety, as well as your business’s reputation. In this article, you’ll discover three tips for creating a social media policy for […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

How to Create a Fail-proof Mastermind Group

How to Create a Fail-proof Mastermind Group

We know you’ve heard it before (um, even from us) — you should join a mastermind group, also known as a group of 4-6 people who meet about every two weeks to give each other advice and hold one another accountable to big goals.

It’s kind of a no brainer, isn’t it? We all know that trying to do it all alone as an entrepreneur is a recipe for eventually giving up when the going gets tough. So to join forces with people who get what you’re doing, who you can bounce ideas off of — it’s basically a way to build an informal board of advisors into your business.

We’ve already written all about masterminds, what they are and how to find them. So for today’s conversation, we’re approaching this from a new angle.

We’re focusing on the pitfalls: why groups fizzle out before they really get off the wrong, how even groups with the best of intentions might set themselves up to fail, and how to build yours strong from the start to avoid losing steam.

Listen to this podcast episode if you want deeper insights

We get to go deeper in our episodes of the Fizzle show, sharing personal stories and more to really get these ideas taking root in you. Enjoy!

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Wrong mix of people

Having the wrong cast of characters in your group is one of the number one reasons masterminds fail.

You could be in a group of people who all like each other and would love to grab beers together, but aren’t really set up to be each other’s strategists and accountability partners.

So how can we insure we’ve got a mix of people who will gel? Coming up with a criteria for your group will set you up to select qualified members.

If you’re organizing a group, we recommend seeking people who are in a similar business stage. It’s totally cool if one of you is a food blogger, one is a personal finance podcaster, and yet another is a personal trainer.

The bigger questions is, are you roughly in the same inning of this whole thing? Is one person so far behind the rest of the group, he or she might feel too new? Or is there someone way ahead of the game who would really be more like a mentor than a peer?

Great markers for business stage are email list and revenue. If everyone in the group is in the same general neighborhood when it comes to audience size, that’s a good indication that you can help each other. There will always be some diversity in the group (which is great!) but the idea is to find peers who are just about even with you so far.

Wrong format

A mastermind group needs strong but balanced ground rules. If there’s no structure, an hour goes by really fast and you might just find yourselves “catching up” as friends. That sounds fun, but not exactly productive.

It also helps to have someone to keep the meeting on track and manage the time. This person isn’t a group dictator or even a leader as much as an *organizer* or secretary who is charged with making sure things stay mostly on track.

We’ve found that most successful groups seem to do some version of:

  • Highs & Lows: Each person in the group takes just a minute or two to share what’s gone well and what hasn’t gone as well in the time since the group last met.
  • Hot Seat: This is the real meat & potatoes of the meeting. A “hot seat” is basically a strategy session focused entirely on one person’s business. The person in the hot seat brings specific questions and roadblocks, while the rest of the group gives feedback.
  • Commitments: The meeting ends with each member committing to a very specific task he or she needs to make progress on before the group gets together again.
  • Staying connected between meetings: Most successful groups choose to say in touch between meetings so members can get quick feedback and cheer each other on. Use Facebook groups, Slack, email, etc.

No accountability

One of the primary reasons to join a mastermind group is for the accountability — aka, to help you actually make progress and do what you said you would. If weekly commitments aren’t spoken and then captured, they disappear (and you’ll likely forget.)

Mastermind Groups can accelerate your growth, but only if they fulfill their main purpose: keeping you on track.

One game-changing mastermind tip is to have the group secretary jot down a few keywords summarizing each person’s commitment. These notes should be posted to the group’s communication channel of choice for everyone to see (and therefore, making you much more likely to actually do it!)


This may be the number one reason groups fail. When people start skipping meeting, or if they aren’t set up in advance, the group will quickly fizzle out.

We know there are real challenges here, such as time zone conflicts, family commitments, day jobs and more. But since inconsistency is such a mastermind killer, the group should commit to some amount of time to really go “all in”.

For example, when my podcasting mastermind group started meeting a few months ago, our organizer said, “Okay, if we’re doing this, we all have to fully commit for the next 6 months. No skipping meetings if you can help it, let’s give it our all for 6 months. Who’s in?”

As a result one of our founding members decided she needed to leave the group right at the beginning. We were sad to see her go, but it was critical that she recognize that she was not able to commit and cut ties early on. Otherwise, if this particular member had kept skipping meetings and holding up the group, it likely would have discouraged the rest of us.

So these are the big mistakes, pitfalls and missteps we see when it comes to Mastermind Groups. Have you been part of a group that didn’t quite get off the ground? What do you think went wrong? Or, if you’re in a group you love, how did you navigate these common obstacles? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!


How to Create a Social Media Marketing Content Plan in 7 Steps

Want to connect more with your target audience? Wondering how to deliver relevant social media content consistently? Planning your social media content delivery keeps your marketing on-message, making it more likely that you’ll reach your business goals. In this article, you’ll discover how to create a social media marketing content plan for your business. #1: […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

Twitter Video: How to Create Engaging Video Content

Do you want to use more video in your Twitter marketing? Wondering how each type of Twitter video works? With the launch of its native live video service, Twitter is prioritizing video higher in the news feed, making it the perfect way to reach your audience more often. In this article, you’ll discover how to […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

How Does Your Garden Grow? How to Create and Maintain Evergreen Content

Every good gardener knows there are two types of flowering plants: Annuals and perennials. Annuals bloom once and have to be replanted the next growing season. Perennials stick around; they continue to flower year after year.

Most blog posts are annuals. You publish them, they generate views and shares for a while, and then they basically go dormant. Readers might happen across them occasionally. But think of it this way: When was the last time you went through your favorite blog’s archives? Or clicked on a search result that was over a year old?

Rarely, though, you will find that a post has perennial appeal—what some marketers call “evergreen content.” Even though you published it in 2012, it still gets liked and shared. That’s a clear sign the content is still relevant to your audience.

Evergreen content continues to provide value without extra effort, and it can support spin-offs that fill in blanks in your editorial calendar. So it makes sense to invest some time in creating and caring for your perennials.

How to Create Evergreen Content

On one level, what content becomes evergreen is up to your audience. There will always be a blog post or two that get a surprising amount of sustained attention—posts that just happen to meet an ongoing need.

We’ll talk about how to make the most of these accidental perennials a little later. For now, though, know that it is possible to design content to have lasting value. Aim for content that is:

  • Fundamental and Timeless. Think “how to” content, frequently asked questions, guides to a subject that stays consistent over time. The opposite of newsjacking posts or posts about cutting-edge trends.
  • Take a comprehensive look at a single topic. Go deep, with links to content that explores topics of parallel interest. That kind of value is exactly what will continue to bring in readers over time.
  • “Best Answer” Content. Make sure your topic is highly relevant to your audience—fundamental, timeless, substantial content that doesn’t answer someone’s burning question won’t become evergreen.
  • Highly Visible. Your blog may not be the best spot for content that’s evergreen by design. Let your accidental evergreens live there, but consider a more permanent home for your new perennials. For example, this comprehensive guide to advertising on LinkedIn has its own page on the root directory.

How to Identify Accidental Evergreens

A quick look through your site’s Google Analytics should show what content is still generating interest. Look at your traffic report to see what your top-performing posts have been in the past six months—older posts that are still in the top ten are definitely worth your attention.

It’s worth exploring what keywords your site is ranking for, too. You will likely find some unexpected rankings—blog posts that continue to bring in traffic for a specific long tail keyword. These posts hold some hidden value and are worth maintaining.

Care and Maintenance of Evergreen Content

Now that you have identified the perennials in your garden—and perhaps planted a few new ones—you can help them grow even more value:

  • Refresh Older Posts. If an outdated post is still pulling in traffic, it’s worth pulling in fresh statistics and a few new visuals to make it even more relevant. Don’t forget to change the date and note that it was edited, so readers will know it’s au courant.
  • Make a Hub. Your evergreen post can become the center of an SEO-friendly little content empire. Create new content to expand on part of the post, or address a relevant side topic. Then crosslink between the old and new.
  • Expand and Feature. Take a shorter piece that still gets traffic and expand it—turn your quick how-to into a more in-depth guide. Include visual interest, relevant statistics, and links to other resources (we call this a “power page”). Then take your new asset and give it pride of place, on its own page rather than in your blog.
  • Create a Gated Asset. Evergreen content’s popularity is your audience telling you what they want to know more about. Create an eBook or white paper that further explores the topic of your evergreen content. Then add a CTA to the original post that links to your new asset.
  • Start a Series. As soon as a movie hits big at the box office, suddenly it becomes “part one of a trilogy.” Take the same approach with a surprise evergreen hit. Make it the first in a series of posts on the topic, and link them together.
  • Find New Formats. You can repurpose evergreen content to attract an even wider audience. Make it the basis of a webinar. Turn the stats into an infographic. Discuss it on a podcast. All of these can build on the audience’s demonstrated interest in the topic.

How Green Is Your Thumb?

Evergreen content is a bonus for content marketers. Not only does it generate traffic without effort, it can serve as a starting point to drive even more value for your audience. It’s worth checking for perennials already growing in your content garden, and planting some for next season, too.

How do you repurpose evergreen content? Let me know in the comments.

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© Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®, 2017. | How Does Your Garden Grow? How to Create and Maintain Evergreen Content |

The post How Does Your Garden Grow? How to Create and Maintain Evergreen Content appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®