How to find free photos for your website

free_photos_for_websiteIt’s easy to find beautiful royalty-free photos to use on your website or blog. But these often come at a price, and if you’re a tiny business or just starting up,  it can get expensive.

So I thought a list of sites where you can get photos for free would come in handy! But…

Remember to check what you are allowed to do with the images

Please note that, although you can use the photos on these sites for free, you need to check the usage rules of each site carefully:

– Sometimes you need to credit the photographer, website or both

– Sometimes you don’t need to add a credit at all, but they would appreciate a mention on you website

– Sometimes you have to get permission to use the photos in certain ways and places (e.g. for morgueFile you need to contact the photographer if you want to use a photo in a blog post, but not if you’re a designer or illustrator using it in your own work)

– Usually, you can’t incorporate the images into your logo

Read moreHow to find free photos for your website

How to make your first video for YouTube (the stress-free way)


Why is video marketing so important right now?

(Last update: March 2015)

Video is huge in the world of online marketing, but why is it so important? How about these good reasons:

1. Facebook page reach. Remember those golden days when you could post something on your Facebook page and most of your page likes would get to see it in their feeds? Well I’ll let you in on a secret…it still works if you use video. Yes, try it!  But you must upload the video to your Facebook page rather than link to a video on YouTube.

2. YouTube is owned by Google, which means that Google will naturally want to promote good content that is posted there in its search engine. (Yes, upload your video to YouTube as well as Facebook.)

2. Many people now use YouTube as a search engine. For example, if they want to know how to put their hair into an ‘updo’ for a special occasion or get their lighting right in their family photos they will go straight to YouTube rather than to Google. If someone needs a product review before they decide which item to buy, they can watch the product being unboxed and used on YouTube.

3. Video is the best way of building a relationship with your audience online because they can see what you look like, hear your voice, look into your eyes and understand if you’ve got their best interests at heart or are just trying to flog them something.

4. I’ve found that video converts far more easily than text.  I can spend hours carefully crafting sales copy or I can spend three minutes making a simple video of me talking and the video will make me many more sales than the text will. Yes, video is faster to create and far more effective at making sales.

Note: I don’t make ‘salesy’ videos, instead I give useful information that solves a problem then suggest a product that will help with that problem – here’s an example.

5. Once you’ve made your video, you can share it on Pinterest, Twitter, Slideshare, Stumbleupon… the list goes on. And unlike text blog posts that usually sink without trace after a few weeks, videos will often carry on being viewed for years to come. So each video really is a little asset that can be working for you 24 hours a day.

6. The ‘expert’ factor. Maybe it’s because we’re used to seeing experts on TV, but if you see someone talking on video they ‘feel’ like more of an expert than if they had just written a blog post. And if you’re seen as an expert in your field, new clients are likely to come to you when they next need your help.

So what’s stopping you from making a video?

Well, there are some big mental barriers that can get in your way, including:

Read moreHow to make your first video for YouTube (the stress-free way)

My marketing strategy for my latest free e-book: Getting Started With Twitter Marketing

This week I’ve been trying out a new marketing strategy. I’ve created an e-book called ‘Getting Started with Twitter marketing’ and I’ve uploaded it all over the place!

My theory is that the more places I put it, the greater the chance of people finding it. Here it is on Scribd…

Getting Started With Twitter Marketing by Helen Lindop

But you can also find it on…

Read moreMy marketing strategy for my latest free e-book: Getting Started With Twitter Marketing

How to sell what people want to buy

sell_what_people_want_to_buyOne of the hardest lessons I’ve ever learned is that people will only buy what they want to buy.

That sounds totally obvious, doesn’t it? In fact it wouldn’t be right or fair to persuade someone to buy something they didn’t want. So why is it so hard to actually sell what people want?

The first time I sold something was when I went to an agency and told them what I could do, which at that time was training on various software packages.  They would then match me up with an organisation that needed that temporarily needed that skill. So yes, I was selling what somebody wanted to buy.

But then I saw how much of my fee was being swallowed up by the agencies and I thought I’d try going direct to businesses instead. I created some course outlines based on what other training companies were offering and…well I didn’t get very far. A few days work here and there but that was about it.

The trouble was I didn’t stop to think about…

  • Which problem I was trying to solve for my customers
  • That they’d want a specialist rather than a jobbing trainer who did a whole range of courses
  • They’d be more likely to hire me if they’d  had a chance to get to know me first
  • I was trying to second-guess their needs. I could have just asked them instead.

That doesn’t just apply to trainers, by the way. It applies to anyone selling a service or a  physical product.

Fast forward a few years and I was putting together my first online training course. Actually it was a downloadable information product called Earn What You Deserve as a Mumpreneur. This time I got to know a community (mums running their own businesses), I listened to their challenges and created an online course to help them solve one of them. Big step forward compared to last time. And yes, I actually sold a good few of them!

But I still wasn’t doing the one thing that would make the biggest difference. To ask questions.

It sounds so simple but so many people don’t do it (yes, me included). Here’s why I think we avoid asking our audience whether they’d like a product before we even create it:

Read moreHow to sell what people want to buy