...the Blog

RIP Email Marketing?

Posted on: October 1st, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments


“The social media web is a very noisy one indeed and making sure that you are heard requires you to shout more effectively, rather than louder.”

x                           –    David Amberland

Perhaps video DID kill the radio star, but is email marketing suffering the same fate at the hands of social media?

Take a moment to think about your inbox. How many emails did you receive today that you would consider to be “junk?” There are likely to be quite a few that you won’t even consider opening. Does this mean that email marketing is an old tactic?

Social media is definitely in the forefront but email marketing does NOT need to take a backseat! Social marketing needs to be part of your overall marketing strategy, but don’t give up on your email marketing yet…or allow it to play second fiddle! Why do you suppose that email marketing is becoming less of a priority? Perhaps, very much like its social media cousins, our email marketing is becoming less strategic.

Think about all of those uninteresting emails in your inbox. Have you considered how many companies are responding to a recent purchase and inviting you to make a similar purchase again, whether you’ve just bought a house, got a haircut or treated your child to a new outfit? You didn’t open them, because the sender didn’t catch you at the right time in your buying cycle!

That is just one error that email marketers make. In order to avoid having your readers delete before they click, keep these suggestions in mind!

1)    Be aware of purchase cycles. If your customer just purchased a product or service from you, this is NOT the time to offer the same thing to them again. Try to think like your customer. If you had just purchased X from you, find a Y to offer them instead.

2)    Target your emails. Keep separate lists for clients and prospects and then segment THOSE lists so that your audience is as specific as possible. The more information you have about your contacts, the more specific your targeting should be.

3)   Allow for opt-outs. What? I don’t want to LOSE subscribers, do you? Well, perhaps you do, if you don’t want to waste time and resources emailing someone who is not interested. Plus, it is the law, according to the CAN-SPAM Act so you MUST be compliant with this anyway.

4)  Gather as much data as you can. Every list seems to ask for a name and email address, but that’s not much info to go on for a targeted email campaign. Keep in mind that you have OTHER information available, including the date that they signed up for your stuff. Consider how active they were (some email programs will allow you to track their activity). What did they purchase from you? Has their status changed? Were they a prospect then and a client now…or vice versa?

Consider these ideas as you put together your marketing plan and use them to make your marketing even more effective. An effective email marketing program, including sending newsletters like this one, is still an important part of the plan.

Social media did NOT kill your email marketing plan. It may just need a bit of tweaking!

~ Deborah

P.S. If you’d like to expand your online reach by contributing an article to TimedWrite, click HERE.

Author AND Book Trivia for September

Posted on: September 29th, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments

Do you know the answer to this month’s Trivia lemonsQuiz? Send an email with your guess, and we’ll reward the correct entries with a prize. Or, if you’re into suspense, we’ll publish the answer in the next issue of
Timed Write.

Can you name the memoir (and its famous author) which sold more than 200,000 copies on the first day of publication…more than any non-fiction title?

Here’s a hint: it was published in June 2003.

Send us an email with the answer and we’ll send you a prize!

P.S.The answer to our August 2015 trivia quiz is Charles Dickens. 


Get the Word Out!

Posted on: September 24th, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments

Have you ever wanted to write an eBook but were daunted by the very idea of working through the process?

Well, help is on the way! This summer, we launched our HOW TO WRITE AN EBOOK IN 30 DAYS program.

learn more.png Recommends…

Posted on: September 22nd, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments

              richvale_saddlery (350 x 351).jpg


Check out their WEBSITE and FACEBOOK PAGE for useful information for  resources on saddlery, equine care and a whole lot MORE!

It’s YOUR Turn to Find the WORDS!

Posted on: September 17th, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments

CLICK HERE to access this month’s PRINT ME Puzzle!

 Here’s our SEPTEMBER Word Search puzzle! Have FUN!

Need a puzzle for YOUR next newsletter? We can help!


P.S. Check out our new PUZZLES page on

Thanks for YOUR Thanks!

Posted on: September 15th, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments

resume_writerHere’s an excerpt from an email that we received from a young lady who was successful in her job search, with the help of the RESUME-Writer AND her mom, who knew just where to send her!

“Thank you for helping me to get my very first summer job with a really good resume and cover letter. I brought them to my interview and I got hired right there. I had a really good summer working at the animal shelter.”   –  M.J.P.

Grammar Errors? Get It WRITE!

Posted on: September 10th, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments


Business owners have a LOT of stuff to write: marketing pieces and webpages, blogs and newsletters…the list goes on and on. Some write a lot, others write a little but ALL of us need to know how to write effectively or at LEAST correctly and THAT includes paying attention to grammar.

You may protest, complaining “Who cares if I mix up me and I or there and their?” Your audience DOES care because, like it or not, good grammar adds to your credibility.

+Your words are an extension of YOU and your business and you can’t afford to have them look sloppy and unprofessional.

We rewrite someone’s words every day, and here’s our list of the most common grammatical errors that we see most often. 

1. Misplaced Apostrophes. 

 This is one of our pet peeves! Too many of us add apostrophes to sentences where they don’t belong! Remember that apostrophes are used to show possession and to indicate contractions. They are NOT used to pluralize nouns (or even verbs!). If you need a refresher about apostrophes, check out our October 2013 blog post.

2. Me, Myself and I

We just covered this topic last month in the August issue so please take a minute to read all about it, if you haven’t already. AND, remember the Golden Rule: take the other person out of the sentence and see if it sounds correct! 

3. Dangling Participles 

Oh, no! Not those dangling participles again! We had a HOOT writing about these in our January 2014 newsletter! 

You’ll often see these ING words at the beginning of sentences and NOT agreeing with the subject that immediately follows them. Here’s an example: 

Bubbling merrily on the stove, Mother stirred the soup.You get the idea! 

4. i.e. vs. e.g. 

Here’s one that we are ALWAYS rewriting because these two abbreviations mean very different things and are NOT interchangeable! 

i.e. is a Latin abbreviation for id est or “that is.” It is used to clarify or paraphrase information. 

e.g. is also Latin and stands for exempli gratia or “for example.” This is used to introduce a list of examples. 

Let’s look at these two abbreviations in sentences. 

More readers are commenting on our blog, i.e. our engagement is increasing. 

We use several factors to determine the success of our blog,e.g. number of reader comments, unique visitors and sign-ups.

5. Use or Utilize?

What’s one of our top rules for good copy writing? Don’t use a long word when a simple one will one will do! We think that using fancy words like “utilize” will impress our readers, but “use” is a perfectly good word AND it is often a more appropriate choice.

Everything that we write for our business, no matter how mundane, creates an impression in the mind of our reader. Little details, like our five most common errors, DO make a difference! Check your next bit of business writing (even simple emails) for these errors before you send it out to the world!  

BLOG-Writer DEAL of the MONTH!

Posted on: September 8th, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments



For the month of September we’re celebrating the launch of our new BLOG-Writer service with a DOUBLE DEAL

Every new BLOG-Writer client will receive their own copy of ourFIVE MINUTE FIXES eBook PLUS a FIRST BLOG [post] FREE!

Check out our DEAL OF THE MONTH page to learn more!

A-Bloggin’ We Will Go!

Posted on: September 2nd, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments


“The social media web is a very noisy one indeed and making sure that you are heard requires you to shout more effectively, rather than louder.”

–    David Amberland

                                          OUT OF SIGHT, OUT OF MIND!

Do YOUR clients and prospects know that you’re still alive and kicking? They won’t if they don’t hear from you. Remember the old adage: OUT OF SIGHT, OUT OF MIND?

Here’s hoping that you regularly publish a periodic newsletter to your lists, because keeping up with that contact and providing that content is a great way to get your message out to your audience. HOWEVER, have you considered that it is only a one-sided form of communication?

That’s why we also encourage our clients and readers to further nurture their online relationships by maintaining a blog. You’ll be able to reach your audience more than once a month (or however often you publish your newsletter)…and even once a day, if you like.

Unfortunately, one blog post a day does not equal one sale a day! BUT, blogging DOES improve your web presence and your search engine visibility. A well-written blog gets shared, it generates comments and gets people talking.

Most of our clients have the same two problems with blog writing: either they don’t know what to write or they haven’t time to write it! For years, we’ve been creating blog posts on a variety of topics for our clients. We know what to say and we LOVE to write it! That’s why we’ve bundled our blog-writing experience into a new BLOG-Writer service that we are launching TODAY!

Please take a moment to check out our BLOG-Writer page and let us know what you think. It is also our DEAL OF THE MONTH for September.

We could LOVE to start writing YOUR blog TODAY! 

                       learn more.png

~ Deborah

P.S. We also have a nifty new FREEBIE with a whole bunch of ideas for re-purposing your blog content. We’ll be releasing it along with the BLOG-Writer service but you can take a sneak peak at it HERE.  

Author Trivia…Quirky Habits Edition!

Posted on: August 25th, 2015 by Deborah Plouffe No Comments

Do you know the answer to this month’s Trivia Quiz? Send an email with your guess, and we’ll reward the correct entries with a prize. Or, if you’re into suspense, we’ll publish the answer in the next issue of
Timed Write.

You will often find that the greatest authors have the quirkiest habits!

Can you name the famous author who could only write when he (there’s a hint!) was facing north?

Send us an email with the answer and we’ll send you a prize!

P.S.The answer to our July 2015 trivia quiz is Romeo and Juliet.