Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA)

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AFRINIC 27 MEETING

FREELANCING

A freelance worker is a self-employed person offering services to multiple clients at a time. The type of work varies. Every type of service required by any business can be provided by a freelancer at a cost/fee. Some freelancing jobs pay hourly rates to the extent that freelancers earn full time wages or more. A freelancer can set hourly rates which are often higher than the freelancer would earn as salary for the same job.

The regularity of the freelance work can vary. Many work for the same clients over a period of time whilst others work on specific projects. Some of the services include providing web programming and design, social media marketing, copywriting, publicity, interpreter/translator, multimedia artist, writing articles and blog posts, creative works, etc. Freelancing is something you can start today with next to zero up-front investment. And if you take the time to master a specialized, in-demand skill – you can easily earn good money every month. Some people start freelancing with after office hours’ jobs to earn additional source of income.

Freelancing provides one the opportunity to work from home full time. The hours of work of a Freelancer are flexible and a freelancer can set his/her own work hours/days on projects of choice.  It is good to note that freelancing is different from owning your own business as a freelancer provides services and do not hire other people to do the work.

Although freelance world is very robust globally, it is arguably seen as a fiercely competitive marketplace. Many Nigerians have joined the league of those who offer their skilled services online. Several websites advertise these jobs. Freelancers also visit these websites to offer their services, of course for a fee.

Through freelancing, some businesses achieve more results. Freelancing makes it fast, simple, and cost-effective to find, hire, work with, and pay the best professionals anywhere, any time.

A FEW OF THE MOST IN-DEMAND FREELANCE POSITIONS are listed as:

     Computer Programing

     Graphic Design

     Article Writing

     Internet Marketing

     Customer Service

     Website Design

     Domain Name Reselling

The online freelancing industry is a generous provider of work for people. With specialized skills that can provide solutions to a task or problem, freelancing is opportunity to rake in extra money.  There are lots of people out there searching for experts in one field or the other; you should grab the opportunity without delay. You must also protect your freelance work. To be successful, you need to be proactive and constantly search for clients, diversify your income, consider when work can dry up, advertise, grow your network, etc. 

Being a Better Webmaster

As we all know, the Internet is the predominant way, businesses and organisations associate to their clients and each other. The organization and maintenance of the content of a website has become complex and requires special talents, focus and skills. Website content managers and webmasters are responsible for the information available on the website of most businesses and organisations.  As a site owner, it is required that you have the best possible webmaster.  In recent years, the profile of webmasters has risen with the increase and reliance on online marketing and online trading and businesses. The following are just a few of the activities carried out by webmasters who know their onions.  

1 – Regular Website Updates

After building a powerful website, it is important that regular updates are carried out. The first being regular update of the website content. Note that, adding new content to the site on a regular basis confers a powerful SEO advantage that could lead to higher site ranking in the natural search results.  This, in turn, leads to increased traffic and provides tangible benefits for investment.

2 – Run periodic usability tests

Whenever changes are made to a website it’s important to run periodic usability tests that identify any errors that may be inhibiting the site’s functionality.  Usability tests can be as simple as previewing the website in different browsers using available tools or as complex as navigating through every page on the site in order to manually detect errors.

3 – Manage broken links appropriately

When running usability tests, it is necessary to watch out for broken links.  Internal or external links that refer visitors to pages that are no longer live (whether due to the movement of the page, the closure of the site or some other circumstance) both frustrate users and prevent the search engines’ indexing programs from effectively cataloging the pages on a site. If broken links are encountered on the website, either remove the links or redirect the link to a different page entirely.

4 – Engage the community on social sites

Engaging in social media marketing is now a “must do” for all webmasters, given the expectations of today’s consumers and the SEO value that can be derived from social networking interactions. Start small by building a business profile on one of the top social media sites (including Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Instagram) and make a commitment to post new content and engage with followers once a day.  Once this becomes routine, expand business social presence to other networks or delve more deeply into marketing strategy recommendations for the chosen site.

5 – Solicit user feedback to drive website changes

Finally, good webmasters recognize that their opinions on their websites are just that – opinions.  Instead of building and managing their sites from this narrow point of view, these business owners ask their users for feedback and make changes based on this advice.

Truly, website management is an ongoing process that requires continuous commitment from site owners in order to maximize performance.  It is advised to add the tasks on the webmaster “to do” list, to guarantee increased website traffic and better natural search results rankings.

 

Called from: Hostgator.com

 

 

Online Branding Strategies That Work for Small Businesses

1.       Social media marketing

Social media is the best thing that could ever have happened to small business branding online. Both big and small companies create pages on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Minimal costs are associated with this. What these companies are doing is social media marketing. Profiles for businesses can be created in the appropriate social networking sites, after which, the owners start connecting with both established and potential customers. The key to success in social media marketing is participation. You need to be in there, and participate on a regular basis.

 

2.       Search engine marketing

Search engines are the biggest tools online, that can be used for business branding purposes. The great thing about search engines is that they drive highly targeted customers. Therefore, focus majority of your traffic-building strategies on driving search engine traffic.  This is referred to as organic traffic.

 3.       Blogging

Do not underestimate the power of blogging as a small business branding method. Search engines love blogs because of their ever current content. Blog for your business to achieve desired success.

 

4.       Pay per click advertising

Invest in marketing in order to build a brand online. Invest in a pay per click system, where you pay for every lead sent to your blog/website. Start with Google – set a budget and bid, select keywords and write a quick ad. Now you’ll be there when some “Googles it!

 5.       Article marketing

Article marketing is where you write short articles that are distributed throughout free article marketplaces. This is commonly used as a traffic-building strategy and quite effective in building brands online.

 

6.       Contests

People love contests and some of these are sponsored by businesses.  Build your own contests and watch your brand strength increase.

 7.       Promotional Giveaway

Give away products or promotional items on social media attract a lot of attention and traffic. Clients and potential clients are always eager to participate in competitions, etc. Pop the question about the product on whatever platform, even radio programmes, many would respond in the bid to win the prize.  Even on twitter, when people are asked to, “Retweet upon receipt,” many would respond to the challenge.

Concluding, every business owner should know that business branding takes time. There is no magic pill or overnight solution to business branding. It could take ages for the desired success. Patience, endurance, persistence and hard work are required to make success of any business.  

INTERNET BRANDING STRATEGY FOR SMALL SCALE BUSINESS

Internet Branding is a word often associated with online marketing. You must have heard it, but what does it really mean? Can branding help drive more traffic to a business website and create a number of rabid fans and buyers?

A brand can be defined as a “trade-name, trade-mark, line, label, make, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers.” And over time, this image is associated with a level of assurance, credibility, quality and satisfaction in the mind of the customer.

The brand of a seller can differentiate that product/ service online and separate that organisation from the crowd. To have a wider outreach in this technological age, with so many websites and Internet marketers all vying for customers, it is important to differentiate one’s offer (a Unique Selling Proposition) from that which is offered by the competition. You need a domain name, preferably a .ng domain name to place your brand online. You need a very strong domain name that speaks for itself.

The advent of the Internet has highlighted that the era of small business branding platforms, the reign of TV, radio, and newspapers, is over. All businesses now gravitate towards the internet when it comes to business branding and marketing.  Business owners need to reach out to the bigger market. The many Social media platforms have provided the needed avenue for many small scale businesses to engage their prospective patrons. The larger businesses have also caught the bug and have joined the social media platforms to market their brands. They have realized that people are drawn to the social media platforms and have established a presence on those platforms.

Establishing a presence on the Internet is important even if you have a physical store. Online marketing provides lots of opportunities .The outreach is more. It has become necessary to create an interactive, regularly updated site or blog on social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, etc. Being active on social media sites will not only increase brand awareness, it will also boost search engines rank of a business website.

Product Branding Strategies and Tips for Small Business

1.          Use of the power of the Internet to promote a brand

With the Internet, the small business entrepreneurs don’t have to spend much to advertise and market their products. The best avenue to increase brand awareness is the Internet.  With little or no budget, it is possible to  take advantage of Internet resources for product branding campaigns.

2.          Unique Selling Proposition   

It is advised that brand awareness can be increased and strengthened by focusing on one to two features of a business or product.  For product/business branding, SMEs are advised to identify the best and most saleable feature of their product and use that to formulate the product branding strategy.

  3.          Promoting the business

Up-to-date contents should always be available on the company website as it is a strategy to increase brand awareness.  There are several tools and platforms to launch advertising and marketing campaigns on the Internet to strengthen a brand and its online presence.  The internet is a great influential avenue to promote a product and establish a brand.

 4.          Leverage on social networking media

Most people have their own social networks so product branding is highly recommended to be carried out on social media platforms. 

 5.          Consistency in promoting brand online

The best product branding strategy is to ensure that expectations exceed the target market. Have events (promotions, awards, competitions, etc) that keep the brand in the news for positive image.

To build a powerful/strong brand on the Internet, ensure a niche market is created for your brand. Host your website locally to ensure short time frame to resolve challenges. Every business should aspire for strong online presence, portraying the brand as trusted and reliable. With a strong brand, you can enjoy greater recognition and profitability.  It must be noted that the Internet provides a good leverage to a small business for promoting its brand. For your online presence, register your preferred available .ng domain name to ensure you can promote your brand online.

Innovation: Use of Domain Names

Is it possible that the cause of failure of some businesses is the way they are managed and the type of tools adopted in running these businesses? It is reported that as of date, there are over 1billion websites online and the figure keep growing every second. Some of these websites are active whilst some are inactive.

Nigeria has a large percentage of this growing figure, on the Internet and of course the number of Nigerian websites, using  .ng domain names, is growing steadily.

The importance of online identity has given birth to a global community being supervised by Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). ICANN is charged with several responsibilities; one of which is the re-delegation of Top Level Domains (TLDs), be it generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) or country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD).

While some businesses have become innovative in their conduct, some other business owners are still relying on the old ways for their operations. The old ways of business management can be tough, taking longer hours, with many uncertainties and risks with the limited rewards .Fortunately, there are countless modern tools, application and software platforms available for running online businesses. For an online business, a domain name is required to give the business owner an identity on the global space. Putting one’s business online can provide a wider reach for the business, bringing the business and its benefits nearer to the customers.

To really be a successful business owner, it is necessary to embrace technology. To bring your business online, register a befitting domain name and put your business online.

For a Nigerian business owner, it is always advisable to register your .ng domain name, recognizing the need for Nigeria identity online on the cyberspace.  

Why is it good to register your .ng domain name now!

     Businesses within Nigeria with the .ng domain string are ranked first in the search engine optimization (SEO).

     It gives your clients a sense of reliability and reachability.

     It is affordable and conserves foreign exchange.

 

You can buy your .ng domain name from any of the NiRA Accredited Registrars via the link: www.nira.org.ng/accredited-registrars