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Everything posted by Alex

  1. Making a clear offer up front and going over-the-top to strengthen its value Creating consistent, engaging content to go along with it Repeat From the beginning when you visit MD.com you see that I am selling a WordPress theme called Marketers Delight and from there you can read about everything it offers and read into its benefits. From there every other blog post, stream post, download, offer, and every other piece of content that follows it supports your purchase. You aren't just getting one download, but many supporting pieces that adds a lot of extra value. The most sales and highest levels of engagement the MD email list makes is when I am emailing about a new version or release. General content and new tutorial newsletters do okay, but nothing gets my list more excited than something new that is ready for them to use. Basically, value value value and then repeat. Now this doesn't build my email list but it does strengthen it. The highest quality email list you can build is a list of those who have purchased something from you. The trust is already there since they have purchased from you, now it's just on you to keep adding value and not mess up, really.
  2. Sorry I am late to this thread—EPIC idea! It's true that many people will join your email list just for the freebie, but if you can structure your funnel properly the ideal thing that happens is as follows: Somebody signs up to your newsletter to download your freebie Your freebie is genuinely valuable and leaves an impression on them/teaches them something profound Your freebie has a "next step" option to buy your higher ticket item like a product or hire you for your services The best case scenario is that you sell your higher ticket items through offering a freebie—where you stand to make a lot of money, and the worst case scenario is you only gain an email subscriber (which is important for a variety of reasons). The $1/$2 idea severely limits those possibilities and I don't think will yield any worthwhile revenue. To avoid paying for dead subscribers, you should clean out subscribers who haven't opened any emails in the whatever criteria you see appropriate Every few months I delete subscribers from the MD list who haven't opened the last 5 emails and I haven't missed any of them yet! I'd say this one depends on your offer, but for most blogs I would recommend going with Option A and really nailing the offer. Come up with the absolute best text, best image, and best freebie/incentive, and run hard with it. Once your site gets bigger and audience more diverse, that's where coming up with contextual popups could come in handy, and is something I have in mind for the upcoming MD popups builder. Again, this one all depends on the context and it's really more about when you place the signup offer. These days I know sidebar optins don't convert well (but I have an idea in MD to help revive the sidebar optin) and the absolute best ways to convert are 1) In-content offers (that's why I have created different call to action Blocks for the new post editor) 2) Floating bar offers (also coming in MD5.0) The days of throwing optins in random places and hoping they stick are mostly over because we have figured out some of the best areas that these offers convert now.
  3. As of late I have been practicing my new writing habit on my personal blog and have been having a blast. At the end of every night I have committed myself to writing something new for the MD website or my blog and each night I feel as I have gotten a little better. I am fortunate to own the .com domain to my name so I have been using it to put the rawest, most real thoughts and experiences from my life there and I can tell it is only going to get weirder (crazier?) as time goes on. While I try to make these posts somewhat interesting and readable for others, I am ultimately writing for myself despite how incomplete they often feel. I have an inkling that I put myself at risk sharing such personal things here on the "business" forum, but I am not asking for anybody's judgement and my track record speaks for itself as imperfect as it may be. Here are the new blog posts that have come up since I declared this new writing habit... enjoy? How I Used Tobacco to Quit Marijuana - September 26, 2019 How I Reclaimed My Voice After Years of Gray - October 30, 2019 Results From the Amazing Liver and Gallbladder Flush (Ongoing Cleanse) - November 4, 2019 The Pain You Carry is the Life You Live - November 6, 2019
  4. I know many of you use Marketers Delight to create marketing related sites, but how often are you publishing to your blog? Having a blog attached to your products can be one of the most effective ways to bring targeted traffic to your site and is a excellent long-term strategy for building an audience. On top of that, writing is a therapeutic experience and thrilling hobby to get good at that will give you plenty of keepsakes to look back on over the years. To help get your writing exposed and even help encourage you to publish more, I am opening up the new "Share Your Posts" forum where you are free to create threads to share blog posts you publish to your websites and open up discussion from the MD community. A few house rules to keep things orderly: This forum is specifically for posts published to your website's blog and nothing else. That includes no landing pages, new product releases, about pages, or anything outside of your blog. Please only create 1-2 threads per week per site and group as many blog posts as it makes sense into your thread. For example, if you publish multiple blog posts per week it may be best to create a new thread here per week with links to all of them. Refrain from replying to others threads with simple remarks like "Nice post!" and "Agreed!" and stay on topic with constructive discussions.
  5. Library66 is easily my favorite newsletter and always the first email I check in my inbox every morning. I haven't thought of the Stream for this purpose and I LOVE it! I wouldn't be surprised if this ends up being the most highly visited page on the site. Very well designed and love the images you found (or made?) to design these widgets. You have always been an expert with the Content Spotlight on your sites! Very curious to see how you use Share Notices. It's my dream to make these kinds of optin forms/templates a breeze with MD; version 5.0 should get us there. ----- I'd like to make a suggestion to make the blog teasers listing typography more attractive. Here is the styling I did to make the make the subtext more complementary rather than dominant over the headline: The simple styles: .blog-teaser .small-title { font-size: 22px; line-height: 31px; margin-bottom: 6px; } .blog-teaser .byline { display: none; } .blog-teaser p { color: #777; font-size: 16px; line-height: 25px; } Keep up the great work and really excited to watch this project expand.
  6. Moved to General Discussion. A good distinction here! As MD's email functionality increases it will be important to distinguish which functions should go into MD and others left to the email service. Since the thank you page is most likely going to be created from WordPress, it makes sense this feature is here, and also makes your lists more flexible if used across multiple sites. In the future I see other fields like "Already Subscribed?," and the "Please Confirm your email" page making it into this feature set as well.
  7. Thank you everybody for your amazing responses, I knew sharing this with you all would be the right move and your support means the world as I move to making the words in my original post a reality. The only thing I regret is the date I set, it took me up until this day to get my personal life back in order and the MD Labs situated yet again, but I am here, full present, and EXCITED! Keen - this may have to make the actual MD site. It one form or another - the Gutenberg editor in WordPress leaves me slightly hesitant although my ideas for page building in MD are different and truly rely on the frontend. The term content builder is an important one, though, and differs from how I define page builders. The content building tools I envision for MD are ones similar to the Stream and Bookshelf, where MD will provide a simple admin interface that makes creating different kinds of content pages easy—more than just longform writing and inherently more useful than page builders who only provide the shells for your content. These content building tools also give you strategy. I love reading your posts because they are always so full of enthusiasm and of course great ideas! A modular system where you can import/export different settings and layouts is definitely a high priority because they unlock the things you are asking for like demos, alternative blog layouts, and just better usability when cloning sites and will be very easy to implement with MD's solid data structure. To your point about teaching: that is exactly what needs to be done in addition to development as there is so much more to MD than meets the eye! I won't make any promises on that, I will just do it and make the MD blog one of the best around. Much of what is coming next was born from the work we've done the past 6 months and I can't thank you enough brother! I hope we are able to bring some of the people here to the Sacred Garden in the near future for a similar rebirth. I agree with every word here and it has frustrated me too. It took a lot to see I didn't get in this to run around for a few clients, but the writer of a great product that can be used by thousands of people. That was harder to admit under the cloud of the money that is out there, but none of that would compare if I had just stayed focused on the mission here. I don't have anything against freelancing as it is possible to make quite a good living from it, I just want to step away to enable that possibility for you all through MD as well. YouTube and writing will be a huge part here and finishing stuff especially! Would you be interested in freelancing with MD as this material becomes more available? ----- Thank you again everyone, see you around the forums!
  8. Glad to hear - would love to see the site you are working on! MD will be taking the Dropins concept much farther in the neat future. For anyone else wondering, Yoast adds a title and description setting for custom post type archive pages in the "Titles & Description" admin settings. So for any Stream, Bookshelf, Videos, or other pages you can change the meta right from those settings.
  9. Alex

    MD Optins (5.0)

    By the way, I fixed a permissions error on this forum that now allows you to reply to this thread. Any feedback or ideas are all welcome and encouraged since your voice here could shape how this tool works!
  10. Hey guys, just dropping a note here that I have published an early version of the new and highly expanded MD Style Guide: https://marketersdelight.com/style-guide/ This page is full of great helper classes that MD uses throughout its various features to keep a proportional design and cut down on the amount of custom CSS to create new web elements on the fly. I will continue to update this guide with code examples and I hope the new listing is helpful to those of you who use these classes in your own designs. Please leave any feedback here!
  11. After you copy the shortcode go to the Blocks editor (edit post screen) and click the "+" icon. In the list of available Blocks search for "Shortcode" and click that to insert it into the editor. Then simply paste the shortcode in there and your form will be on your page! Glad to hear and expect a lot more coming from MD soon! If you have your license key enabled you will be able to easily get those updates with the easy one-click updater. I will be around here if you have more questions during your site setup as well!
  12. I was going to recommend Contact Form 7, but it does have some performance concerns I don't notice in Ninja Forms. let me know how it goes - eager to see how you are using your site to capture leads!
  13. Hey Bhenn, for a free contact form solution I have been using Ninja Forms lately which offers all of the fields you are asking for and more: https://wordpress.org/plugins/ninja-forms/ Install the plugin, create a form, then you can embed the form to any page with a shortcode or block. Does that help?
  14. Hey, good question here - these are two powerful options that can have a big implication your page speed. Combine child theme CSS into style.css - that will merge the style.css of your child theme into MD's style.css file and load all of your site's CSS at once instead of splitting them into two HTTP requests. Print style.css inline - This will directly print the stylesheet to your site's head without loading from a file, which means your CSS is instantly readable by a browser without it having to download the separate style.css file. I also have minified the CSS once printed to your head, so there is no faster way to serve CSS than enabling both of these options together. The MD CSS system is unique and I am excited to do a video/more detailed documentation guide explaining how to use it even further but this should give you an understanding of these simple yet powerful options.
  15. This is going to be a brutally honest article of self-reflection and a glimpse into the state of MD and where we are going as a product and community. I'll start by getting the hard part out of the way: I have been extremely unfair to the MD community. Marketers Delight as a software product is incredibly stable and robust after years of development and being battle-tested on thousands of sites since 2015. For years I have been a one-man shown, balancing the product development, community engagement, and a booming freelance business (all MD sites), and throughout that time I have had ups and downs in regards to my work balance and goals for MD. My metric for success and contentment about the product, whether I wanted to admit it or not has been revenue, which has been going up every year and will only continue to do so. But one metric that was not growing relative to the potential of MD and my high ambitions for the product is how much easier it has become for you to do the same advanced things I can do with MD, and implementing more of your requests that fall in line with the goals of the product. While MD has become increasingly capable over the years and many people are creating excellent websites, the development cycle and community have been growing at inconsistent rates—and it all starts from the top. For example, why aren't more of you building successful freelance businesses with MD as I have been? Why aren't more of you creating Dropins and extending your site's capabilities with MD's wonderful APIs? Why aren't more of you motivated to use MD's excellent content features to create the new standard of blogging and audience interaction? The answer to all of those questions is simple: I have not been showing you the way! Sure, I have been throwing out new features in each release and giving you an idea of what they are and how to use them, but more real world examples and more engaging tutorials have been missing. There are many deep concepts built into MD that by simply explaining them further to you can unlock the know-how you need to make better sites and even start a web design business of your own, but the truth of the matter is I have been hoarding that knowledge and money. Instead of writing more tutorials and articles, I have been struggling to find my voice and afraid of the blank screen. Instead of passing on 4 and 5 figure jobs to the most competent of you, I have created a waiting list and over extending myself to write code that is locked away one site at a time rather than releasing those features in a way that can scale to every one of your site's—a feat MD is damn good at! I have made many personal strides over this life-changing summer and broke out of the gray that has kept me rooted in a battle against myself, and my proof is that I am able to deliver these words to you now in a manner as prolific as the way I used to write years ago when I began my first blog (those of you who have followed my work since age 15 should hopefully hear a familiar voice speaking to them right now). Of course words are not enough to prove what I am saying here is different than the similar claims I have made in the past, that is why I am taking an action that I never had the courage to take on before and will be the difference between MD's success and a boost to your own success: I am no longer for hire as a freelance web developer. Many times I have told myself this but have been allured by not only cool jobs, but jobs with high price tags. To make the deal even better, every job I have taken since 2015 has been built on Marketers Delight and what an amazing privilege it has been. Many of those jobs have improved my skills and understanding of websites and have directly benefited MD through bug and security fixes, but after so many projects and becoming a master of WordPress (I am not afraid to say this) these jobs no longer provide the same level of benefits to MD that my time spent directly developing MD would. Even worse, my indifference and mixed feelings have taken a toll on some of the clients I have been unbelievably fortunate to work with, and much of that grief I've created in myself has trickled down here into how well I help you in the MD forums. That is why once I finish my current obligations and do a great job for who I am working with, I will no longer be accepting any web development work and will instead be channeling that immense effort and energy into developing the MD product, growing our community, and training those of you who wish to fill the void I am leaving and take on some great projects that can give you some life-changing income. The future of Marketers Delight is highly modular—importing and exporting templates of all kinds with an easy interface and with all the right optimizations. The future of Marketers Delight is engagement—I will show you what I have learned about creating engaging websites not only in the past but how we can BLAZE a new path for what the future of websites should be in a world that is built for social media. The future of Marketers Delight is present—you will hear from me regularly and together we will build websites that add a fulfilling aspect to our lives and even money in our banks. The next evolution of Marketers Delight starts October 15th, and if you've read this far I just want to thank you for using my product as your means for creating your online business and for accepting me as an imperfect person trying to do right by my business. Thank you for your time, - Alex Mangini
  16. This is too cool and I am excited for the extremely action packed next 5-6 years! To help with your transition I'd be happy to do a child theme audit and help you out on that front if needed!
  17. Alex

    MD Optins (5.0)

    There is still plenty of tweaking to be made but the new popups listing is far more inspiring already!
  18. Alex

    MD Optins (5.0)

    Spent a few hours today restructuring the MD5.0 theme files to make different components more accessible and MD's internal libraries easier to navigate. Not only is clean file organization necessary for ease of development but it is imperative a theme as far reaching as Marketers Delight is structured properly so all of the aggressive features and enhancements coming in this version are sustainably built. The new root file structure of MD5.0 will look like this: A few notes: The content folder has been renamed templates, and all of MD's template files will now live here. This will make finding all of the files eligible to be overwritten from your child theme easier. Don't worry—if your child theme has the content folder in it MD5.0 will still read those files. The css folder has been moved to the root as well and this will make finding different sections of MD's CSS templates easier too. In a nutshell, the style.css file in the root directory is generated from all of the template files in the css folder, which have been broken down into parts. For example, all of the CSS for buttons, columns, spacers, text formatting, menus, etc. all live in their own file. This makes finding specific blocks of CSS easier, and because these files are dynamic, we can use PHP to output dynamic settings which then print to the static CSS file. I will explain this CSS system more in depth as it is very cool, but I anticipate you will have a lot of fun with these template files! This was done in MD4.9.4, and the scripts.js file is also located in the root directory. It makes sense to be here and goes well with style.css, which holds all of your site's frontend CSS. Apart from some serious internal rearrangements MD5.0's main features will be the Optin capabilities shown off here so far. The Popups feature is getting an overhaul and is becoming far more flexible and getting loads of new templates. Admittedly the first version of the new interface I came up with is pretty uninspiring (screenshot below), but I am happy to have made progress on a way more uplifting and easier to use interface. I am slightly embarrassed to show this screenshot off, but it will be great to compare it to the inspired design which I will tease here shortly. 😛 More updates coming soon! MD5.0 is going to be a massive hit!
  19. Alex

    MD Optins (5.0)

    This update has been rebranded to MARKETERS DELIGHT 5.0
  20. MD4.9.5 is now available! This is a simple update that adds a direct integration with MailerLite, meaning you can now connect your site to this popular email service to embed code-free email forms and popups with Marketers Delight. A big thank you to @MasterHealer and others for requesting this feature and I hope it makes your workflows a lot easier. I wrote a stream post to go along with the update so you can read that here. Otherwise MD4.9.5 is waiting for you in your WP admin right now!
  21. Who here takes freelance web design and dev projects and have used MD and WordPress to deliver the sites? Let's hear about your WordPress experience here and if you are currently accepting projects be sure to mention it.
  22. We create online businesses to serve specific needs through a specific voice that is calculated and stays on brand, though unfortunately at the expense of all the other wacko ideas and deep thoughts that may be valuable elsewhere. That's the value of having a personal blog and if you are lucky to own yourname.com, can create a body of work that lasts a lifetime. Over the past week I've been reworking my own personal site in a way that fulfills any urges I have to write other kinds of content. It's not that I wouldn't share this kind of content anywhere else, there's just no better place to put them! Many of us (myself included) are trying to build the most complicated sites and see how far we can stretch MD and WordPress, so this personal site allowed me to experiment with scaling down to build a website. Let me tell you, MD made creating a pretty cool site super easy. Features I have activated throughout the site: Connected to MailChimp in the MD integrations panel Showing one email form in multiple parts of website from one settings screen Enabled the Stream to create a micro-blog Enabled the Bookshelf to create a reading list page Like and share buttons on blog and stream posts Custom sidebars on Stream page (though disabled right now for future plans) Changed some design settings in MD > Site Design and wrote minimal custom CSS to tone down default MD styles ...and none of this required any plugins! In fact, I only have one plugin enabled: The All in One SEO Framework (premium version). I can't believe a site like this exists and is so fast, and using MD's features was just a joy! Not to gush too much of course, it's rare I can use MD in a relaxed environment without stressing about the flaws or getting lost in where I want to take it next. Do you have your own personal sites you have made with MD? Reply here or post your own thread about it!
  23. WOW I totally missed this and am happy you posted it @Ivan Brezak Brkan. Anybody who uses MD is free to share any kind of success they find, even from others! Content Marketing Academy has put together a great website (although it seems they need a better web host!) and I am excited to go more in depth through this podcast @chrismarr101
  24. Yes, WooCommerce is a free solution and many MD users run it on their website (I am kind of wishing I used it on the MD site!). When looking for a Stripe plugin, make sure it is integrated into WooCommerce. They have an official Stripe plugin they offer for free which you can find on their website as an addon.
  25. I am definitely curious about this one-part of Raylosophy? ----- An early one for me today. Looking to knock out a ton of client work by 10am, get some sun, then back on for some Premium MD projects, then find some time for MD Popups. Will update back with what I actually did when all is said and done. Created a testimonials page for MD using the Testimonials Dropin (link on showcase page). Will now have a quick and easy way to add testimonials to this page as they come in. I added a custom sidebar with links back to blog reviews too. Redesigned the Members area for simpler navigation, removed old resources, and added new Dropins listing. Check it out! Updated the design of the Changelog page Moved the blog to Marketersdelight.com/blog, put landing back to front page tweaked a bunch of copy, adjusted spacing on landing page Added Bitcoin as an accepted payment for MD... lets see how this goes!
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