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Create A Facebook Group For Your Business

5 Undeniable Reasons To Start A Facebook Group For Your Business

Its late 2018 and many businesses are starting to believe that Facebook is losing its magic touch since it’s become increasingly hard to reach their customers on that platform.

However, with over 2.23 billion monthly active Facebook users worldwide for Q2 2018, it’s still the largest social network by far, and an important way of reaching out to your customers, especially in the B2C segment.

As of January 2018, India had 270 million Facebook users, ahead of the United States with 210 million Facebook users.

In this article, I discuss why Facebook is still relevant to your business and why you should be using the Swiss knife of marketing tools – Facebook Groups.

  1. The Organic Reach Of Facebook Pages Has Plummeted

In 2018, there’s simply too much content being published on Facebook, making visibility in the News Feed increasingly competitive, says Hubspot.

And this applies even to massive pages with a huge number of fans. In fact, the more fans you have, the fewer will see your updates.

For Pages with more than 500,000 Likes, organic reach could be as low as 2%. This means a Page with 10,000 fans could expect just 650 of them to actually see that Page’s posts in their News Feed. For a Page with 1 million fans, about 20,000 would end up seeing posts.

Also, Facebook now prioritises content from people you know rather than brands and company pages. So you’re more likely to see content from your family and friends than from Facebook pages you’ve liked (which is how it should be on a social network).

For brand pages, Facebook has now become Pay-to-Play. That means you have to shell out money for Facebook ads if you want to boost the reach of your posts.

  1. Groups Are Facebook’s New Priority

Facebook’s mission has changed to focus on the activity levels of users and to support the most active so that they can keep building the digital spaces that draw in the masses. Their new mission is to “give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.”

Facebook announced that an important part of delivering on their new mission was supporting Group admins, who are the real community leaders on Facebook. In fact, Facebook Groups are the new hub for communities on Facebook and many brands are taking note.

  1. A Facebook Group Can Become Your Brand’s Focus Group

According to this article by Silverback Strategies, a Facebook Group “segments the audience into a self-selected contingent, which is extremely valuable for brands, especially larger ones. In much the way that targeted paid Facebook ads do, posts within a Facebook Group reach a specific, segmented audience.”

You can use this super-targeted audience as your own personal focus group by creating a Facebook poll in the group to find out what they’re interested in and even doing a soft-launch of a new product or service to get feedback and make improvements.

The Group Discover feature shows Facebook users recommendations for Groups they can join based on their friends, location and interests, so creating a Facebook group around a specific interest or topic can attract Facebook users interested in that topic.

However, it pays to choose your topic and group name carefully. Don’t be overly promotional in your group name or it may repel users. Some of the largest Facebook groups are based around a cause because people generally want to be a part of something larger than themselves.

Creating a group around a cause or a topic that people are passionate about can work brilliantly, as long as it ties in with your brand and message, and your branding is subtle.

  1. You Can Build A Community Of Super-Engaged Followers

Facebook Pages are a monologue, whereas Facebook Groups are a dialogue. They can give brands a way to reach out to each person in their community on an individual level.

Your Group can be super-engaged as long as the admins and moderators make the effort to build a lively community. You can make use of a number of tools to boost engagement, such as announcements, events, video, polls and social learning units.

Trainers and coaches can use the Social Learning Units feature to help followers learn new skills by creating an agenda or curriculum and tracking completion of posts.

Make sure you write a comprehensive description for your Group and add a link to a landing page with your opt-in form to build your subscriber list. Offer a lead-magnet to entice your members to subscribe to your list.

Lay down a set of rules for engagement in the Group, depending on the objectives you want to achieve. State clearly what sort of posts are and aren’t allowed and what will get users banned.

To create anticipation for your posts, it’s a good idea to have a calendar for the week so that your followers know what to expect or how to engage on specific days.

For instance, you can post videos on Thursday (one of the best days to publish to Facebook, according to Coschedule), start sharing threads or allow members to post ads on Friday – another day with the highest engagement – and even allow a member to take over the Group for a day.

If you’re asking, “Can I create a Facebook Group from my business page?” the answer is, Yes! Facebook has now allowed brand Pages to create their own Facebook Groups and link the two, allowing brands to tap into the audience they’ve already built with their page.

You can see how I’ve linked the Naaree Facebook Group to the Naaree Facebook Page in the image below.

Can I create a Facebook Group from my business page

 

If you already have a following on your Facebook page, you can invite a limited number of Page fans to join your Group every day and make your Facebook Group bigger that way.

Facebook has also rolled out Group-to-Group linking, which allows Group admins to recommend similar or related Groups to their members. You can use this feature to collaborate with other Groups based on similar themes and get found by their members.

The Group Insights feature allows admins to see real-time metrics around growth, engagement and membership — such as the number of posts and times that members are most engaged.

  1. Facebook Group Admins Could Charge For Content

A number of business owners are already using private or secret Facebook pages to offer exclusive content and support to their paying customers. But now you just might be able to charge for your content without ever leaving Facebook.

As the Business Standard reported, on 20th June 2018, Facebook introduced a subscription feature that will allow group administrators to charge members for exclusive content.

Subscription groups were created to make it easier for admins to provide these experiences with built-in tools, and to save them time so they can focus on offering members-only content. Members can sign-up and manage their subscription through the Facebook app for iOS and Android.

Currently, the subscription groups feature is being tested with a small number of groups across a range of interests. Based on initial feedback from these groups, the company will improve the experience before rolling it out for others.

If your company’s business model is based around paid content, you might want to start a paid private Facebook Group.

What To Keep In Mind As a Facebook Group Admin In India

After several people in India were arrested for their comments on Facebook or Twitter, sparking outrage, the Supreme Court, in March 2015, struck down Section 66A of the Information Technology Act, which allowed police to arrest people for “offensive” comments on social networks and other internet sites.

However, in May 2016, the Court ruled that under sections 499 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code, defamation is a criminal offence and that the criminal provisions of defamation are constitutionally valid.

Defamatory acts can include “words either spoken or intended to be read”, signs or visible representations, which are published or put up in the public domain. The offence is punishable with up to two years imprisonment, a fine or both.

This is especially concerning since Facebook Group admins are legally responsible for the content being shared in their group, and they do have some control over who joins their group and what content they share.

Facebook has control tools available for Group administrators and moderators and removes content that does not adhere to its usage guidelines.

However, it’s always a good idea to have a few moderators managing the content on your Group, and responding promptly to content flagged by members, to prevent obscene, hateful or defamatory content being shared.

It is advisable to use features such as Membership Request Filtering, that allows admins to sort and filter membership requests on common categories like gender and location, and then accept or decline all at once.

With the Removed Member Clean-Up feature, admins can keep their communities safe from bad actors, by removing a person and the content they’ve created within the group, including posts, comments and other people added to the group, in one step.

I hope this list of reasons to start a successful Facebook group for your business has inspired you to use one of the best and most effective Facebook marketing tools in 2018.

Want to learn how to monetize your Facebook Group? Check out the Facebook Group Domination Masterclass – the complete course for everyone who wants to succeed at monetizing Facebook groups.

5 Undeniable Reasons To Start A Facebook Group For Your Business

Kavea Kalaneca Uppada Sarees

Naaree Interviews Kavea R Chavali, Anchor and Co-Founder, Kalaneca Uppada Sarees

Kavea R Chavali is an award-winning Anchor and the Co-founder of Kalaneca Uppada Sarees. She has a strong passion to promote the handlooms of Uppada, Andhra.

As the co-founder of Kalaneca, she looks after the daily activities around the hand-woven sarees, connecting and collaborating with the weavers of Uppada to introduce newer designs and luxurious sarees to people around the world.

KALANECA, is a women-run organisation started by Kavea, her sister, Ramya Rao, and her mother, Lata Rao. Naaree.com caught up with Kavea to learn what inspired her to start her company and what lessons she learned along the way.

What are some challenges that you faced initially when you started out?

So one of the many common challenges would be making the people aware of the idea/product/brand.

When you think of silk sarees you will say a Kanjeevaram or Banarasi, but bringing the heritage and luxurious weaves of Uppada and explaining the intricacies took us time…the faith in our brand built when they started shopping with us.

Straight from the weavers to your closet
Straight from the weavers to your closet

When we started most of our customers were from South India but now close to 35% orders come from the USA as well.

Secondly, as it was a bootstrapped business model, every penny mattered. We have had some of the agencies who tried wasting our money on digital marketing and other technology-related products but thankfully we kept our intent very strong.

One common challenge was the inventory. Our initial business model of retaining the inventory did not really work on our favour. We changed that model and shifted the gears eventually increasing the sales by 45%.

What are all the things that an entrepreneur/achiever in your industry needs to keep in mind? Apart from your great idea, what do you need to be armed with?

One needs to be armed with a consistent intent to start and tremendous patience. My brand doesn’t serve a need like an Ola/Uber. It serves a want.

Patience is very important because everyone is talking about unicorns and billion valuations. The brand has to serve the very same intent it started with at the start. Do it well and do it at your pace.

Secondly, in the age of social media, there are so many brands investing so much on the popular platforms – Instagram marketing or Facebook marketing. This may make them popular but not necessarily successful.

My team cannot sit and compare the number of likes we have vs. another niche handloom brand every day and this is why focus your target audience well. There is tremendous competition but there is room for every honest product too.

Thirdly, enjoy what you do. You are filled with a zillion ideas but once you start a brand if you do not enjoy the process, you will perish. The brand is run by the people so you have to be motivated even if you are on a holiday to fulfil the requirements. So if you do not enjoy it, you are part of a wrong idea.

Did you have a mentor to guide you through your journey? In your opinion, what does a mentor bring to the table?

I never had a specific mentor but I was constantly engaged in startup discussions and digital related conferences thanks to my work. The fact that I have hosted almost 800 shows surrounding technology, digital and start-ups… it gave me an idea on how to go about with my brand.

I interact with the best of the speakers to gain an insight and thankfully as an Anchor for the show I get enough access to them and their ideas.

Having a mentor, of course, brings about newer and matured perspectives. My sister and I have friends who brainstorm wonderful ideas as well and that really helps.

Kalaneca Uppada Sarees

Please describe some successes and failures you have experienced as an entrepreneur.

As our brand is a B2C business, customer satisfaction is the biggest measure of our success. We are just 4 years into this business, but 2 years ago we received a brilliant order from a client in the US.

As the bride, she had certain requirements and we went the extra mile to fulfil it in terms of the weaving, packaging, shipping and getting them done on precise time.

Till date, that experience taught us how we could control time in our hands if we were driven so passionately. That grew our orders in the US market big-time.

Failure would be the year 2016, where close to 180 of our sarees came out of the loom with a weavers blot.

Now this concept of the Weaver’s gum/Mark doesn’t hamper the saree, as it goes away after the first dry clean. But how can one sell these sarees to a customer even at a reduced price? This resulted in a heavy loss for us.

At Kalaneca we do not spend time in brooding over the unhappy things and we do not try repeating those mistakes again. Its a lesson learnt- the hard way but we dust off the bruises and work on an immediate action plan.

What are 3 key lessons that you have learned as an entrepreneur?

As an entrepreneur, you have to be your own boss, your own peon, your own assistant, your own photocopy vendor and the delivery boy too. One thing that I learnt is that no work is small and that just because the world calls you an entrepreneur you can never, never feel entitled.

At Kalaneca, my sister used to pack the bags and would write handwritten notes herself. My mother would visit weavers and procure the designs herself. I once delivered a saree travelling in a local train just because my delivery boy didn’t turn up, but we had to get the job done, so it had to be done.

Secondly, you have to be aware of the industry so read well. Learn what the government schemes are so that you can make the most of it and don’t feel bad if you are seeking help or opinion.

Just because you want to make it on your own doesn’t mean you do not include the people around you. Kalaneca for us is our passion but unless we do not get to connect the right stakeholders the growth will only be derailed.

Marketing. We as Indians have started to believe in the power of marketing now more than before. One must hesitate to make his brand especially when you have such a great product to offer.

There are so many of those who spend so much money on marketing but have a bad product which is why the consumer doesn’t approve of it after a while.

But when you do have a great product get the people to know it in whatever marketing budget you have. Our brand mantra is simple – Straight from the weavers to your closet.

We stick to this mantra and we believe in it 100% and which is why our customers also believe in it.

Naaree Interviews Kavea R Chavali, Anchor and Co-Founder, Kalaneca Uppada Sarees

 

How To Promote Your Business Without A Website

6 Genius Ways To Promote Your Business Online Without A Website

Do you REALLY need a website to promote your business online? What would you say if I told you that you don’t? You’d think I was bonkers, right?

As someone who’s been publishing online since 2001, I’ve been a huge advocate of having your own website to promote your business.

That’s because your website is your home on the web. It’s owned by you, so you have complete control over it. Whereas you can’t control what other people do in their own homes i.e. websites.

So if you posted an ad for your business on someone else’s website two years ago and it’s now outdated and inaccurate, you may not be able to take it down unless you have a login and password.

On the other hand, you can change the information on your own website anytime you want, as long as you can manage it without a website designer.

That said, just having a website is not the end game. Getting clients and customers for your business is. Having a website also means you have to promote it using blogs, SEO, ads and other online promotion methods.

Otherwise, all you’ll hear are… crickets.

But when it comes to getting leads and conversions, you have to ultimately go where your customers are, whether that means having a website or not.

Here are 6 genius and cutting-edge ways to reach your customers without a website.

  1. Google Ads Call-Only Campaign

Google’s Call-Only Campaigns make it easier for businesses to reach their customers by prominently showing their phone number, business description and a call button right where people are searching, as the video below explains.

If you’re still working on developing your mobile website and want to drive more phone calls to your business, this is the campaign for you. Click-To-Call ads are designed to only show on mobile devices that can click to call. They won’t lead to a website.

Google found that 70% of mobile searchers can use Click-To-Call. So if you have a taxi service or a restaurant, you should definitely consider running a Click-To-Call campaign with Google Ads.

Watch the video below and read Google’s Call-Only Ad requirements to learn how to setup your Click-To-Call campaign.

  1. Email Newsletters

Email newsletters allow your prospects to sign up for your email list so that you can follow up with them and convert them from a lead to a paying customer.

You don’t need a website to start an email newsletter. You just need to create an account with an email marketing provider and setup your autoresponder or follow-up sequence.

Every subscribe form you create will have its own unique URL hosted on their server. You just have to promote the link to your subscribe form to get leads.

Some excellent email marketing providers include:

Learn how to grow your list in 90 days for free with GetResponse University’s exclusive List Building Program and download Convertkit’s Free eBook, The Complete Guide to Email Marketing with their best practices, advice, and advanced email marketing strategies.

  1. Landing Page Builders

You can use Leadpages, which offers a 14-day free trial, to create beautiful landing pages that will help you capture emails, build sales funnels and run Facebook ads to your landing pages, all without a website. Leadpages costs as little as $25/month for a subscription.

Personally, I use ClickFunnels, but don’t recommend it as a landing page builder for various reasons, one of which is their poor customer support.

If you’re using sales funnels to funnel leads in from different sources, you should also use a tracking and optimization platform like ClickMagick, that helps you to scientifically track and optimize all your marketing, so you can get more leads, conversions and revenues from the same traffic you’re already getting.

Check out their Tracking Magick Guide, a 1-hour introduction to click tracking and conversion optimization for small online business owners and entrepreneurs.

  1. Facebook Ads

Despite the decline of users on Facebook, it still has the largest user base of any social media network and is a very powerful marketing channel. Best of all, you don’t need your own website to run Facebook ads.

Once you’ve set up your landing pages with Leadpages, as mentioned above, you can take the links to the beautiful landing pages you created and use them to run targeted Facebook ads designed to attract the kind of customers you want.

Facebook has some basic information on how to set up ads on their platform, but if you really want to do it like a Pro, check out Profitable Facebook Ads, the most comprehensive and knowledge packed Facebook Ads course on the market.

  1. Chatbots

As the Instabot page here notes, chatbots are computer programs that mimic conversations with people via audio or text, used to communicate information to users. They exist on many different platforms.

Currently, chatbots communicate through text (as in Facebook bots), meaning you type in your inputs/responses, or through audio (talking to Amazon Echo).

Instant Messaging and chatbots are set to become the main communication channels in the next few years, says Fran Conejos in his article, The Ultimate Guide to Chatbots for Lead Generation, where he outlines a method to capture leads from a chatbot into your CRM or email marketing system.

Want to learn how to start generating leads with your Facebook audience using Facebook Messenger Bots? Check out the How To Use Facebook Messenger Bots For Lead Generation course.

  1. Text Message Autoresponder

Leadpages‘ Pro version has a feature called LeadDigits, that allows you to capture email addresses and phone numbers through SMS text messaging.

How this works is that you have a prospect text a certain word or phrase to a specific number. When they do that, they’ll receive a text telling them to respond with their email address. As soon as they send their SMS, they’ll be added to your lead funnel.

I hope this list of genius ways to reach your customers without a website has given you some ideas to promote your own business online.

With all these cutting-edge tools at your disposal today, there’s no reason why you can’t build your business online without ever requiring a website.

Want to learn more ways of growing your business? Join this free ‘Mass Traffic & Conversions’ Masterclass with Vick Strizheus.

© Priya Florence Shah

6 Genius Ways To Promote Your Business Online Without A Website

Wedding Gift For Couple,Wedding Gift For Bride,Wedding Gifts India,Wedding Gift Ideas India,Wedding Gift Amazon India,Wedding Gift For Couple India

5 Of The Best Wedding Gift Ideas For Couples In India

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosure here.

Imagine walking into your friend’s wedding, hauling a bulky gift box that you have to carry around until you hand it over to the bride and groom on the stage? Then they hand it over to a family member who tries to figure out where to put the thing.

Now, imagine again that you walk into your friend’s wedding, with nothing but congratulations and a hug for the happy couple, content in the knowledge that their marriage gift was delivered, beautifully wrapped, to their parents’ home just that morning.

How much more would you and they be able to enjoy their wedding, dance unencumbered at the sangeet, participate in the raucous laughter and appreciate the delicious buffet!

That’s all possible when you ship their gift to them via Amazon India’s wedding store.

From home décor to kitchen essentials, to the latest gadgets, you can ship your loved ones that special wedding gift without the hassle of having to carry bulky and fragile gift boxes to the wedding venue.

Here are the 5 best wedding gift ideas for couples on Amazon India.

1. Ethnic Bags for the bride

Starting at just a few hundred rupees, and going all the way up to five figures, these gorgeous ethnic bags will please any bride and compliment her traditional attire with beautiful clutches, handbags, Potlis and more. Receiving a gift like this at her home will certainly put a smile on her face.

Designer Bag

2. Grooming Sets for the groom

From electric shavers to rechargeable toothbrushes, there’s a wide variety of personal care and grooming sets at different budgets for the discerning man.

Men's Grooming Kit

3. Home appliances and decor

Home appliances, bedsheet sets, blankets, home décor items – these are all old favourites that newlywed couples love since it saves them the cost of having to buy all these items for their new home.

Home Applicances

4. Amazon Echo Dot

Then again, why be predictable when you can surprise the couple with a brand new Amazon Echo Dot. This brand new gadget is a convenient addition to any room in the house.

It can be put in the bedroom and used to play music, set alarms and turn off lights. Or in the living room to check news, sports scores, calendar, and movie showtimes. Or in the kitchen to set timers, add items to lists and shop for millions of products on Amazon just using your voice.

Amazon Echo Dot
Amazon Echo Dot Image © Amazon.in

5. Wearable Devices

The perfect gift for fitness freaks, wearable devices such as activity and fitness trackers are the perfect wedding gift to say you care.

You could even buy a pair of them for the couple that loves to exercise together. Amazon carries top brands like Mi, Fastrack, Fitbit, Rewy, Lenovo, Apple, Samsung and more.

Wearable Fitness Tracker

We hope that you’ve enjoyed this selection of wedding gift ideas for couples in India.

Disclosure: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.in and affiliated sites.

5 Of The Best Wedding Gift Ideas For Couples In India

Pinterest Marketing Tutorial: How To Use Pinterest For Business Growth

Every time the latest shiny new social network or search engine is launched, we’re told we must get active on it. It’s going to be the next big thing. Sometimes it is… other times not so much.

If you sell anything to an online audience, it’s important to be “with it” when it comes to social networking because that is where your audience is.

However, I must admit I got into the Pinterest game a tad late. Although I did create an account years ago, I never really took the time to figure out how to use it properly.

In fact, I almost gave up on Pinterest, until I realised that it can bring loads of organic traffic to your website if you know how to do it right.

So, a few months ago, I put my head down, figured out how to use it (with a little help from some expert Pinterest marketers), and wrote about the early results I got with Pinterest marketing.

Although I’m not getting hundreds of thousands of visitors from Pinterest yet (unlike some amazing Pinterest marketers out there), I’ve come to believe that it’s an essential marketing channel for many businesses.

Here are 6 things you need to understand before you decide to create a Pinterest marketing campaign.

  1. Pinterest is NOT a social network

Pinterest is a visual search engine or discovery engine, not a social network. So you have to approach Pinterest marketing differently than you would social media marketing.

For instance, on Pinterest keywords are huge, just like they are in Google SEO. So you need to add them EVERYWHERE – in your Pinterest bio, board titles, board descriptions, Pin image titles, Pin image descriptions – you get my drift?

  1. Pinterest is addictive

If you use Pinterest, you’ll know it’s even more addictive than Facebook, and can be a huge time suck. In fact, active Pinners spend an average of 34 minutes per visit on the site.

Addictive social media sites (think Facebook games, apps and all that fun stuff) live, grow and become giants. That means marketers of all types will find their audience on these websites.

As of June 2018, there were 250 million active Pinterest users. Besides the United States, the top three desktop users by country are Brazil, India, and Russia.

  1. Women love Pinterest

If your audience is women, you should know that 81% of Pinterest users are female and 67% of Pinners are under 40-years-old. In fact, millennials use Pinterest as much as Instagram.

So, if your demographic audience is women between the ages of 18 to 40, you simply HAVE to be on Pinterest. Pinterest users show maximum interest in the following topics:

  • Arts and crafts
  • Fashion
  • DIY
  • Home décor
  • Travel
  • Food
  • Recipes
  • Makeup
  • Jewellery

As you can see, most of these are topics are women-centric.

  1. Pinterest users love to shop and buy stuff

Pinterest users are not just window shopping. 93% of Pinners use Pinterest to plan purchases and 87% of Pinners have purchased a product because of Pinterest.

In fact, Pinterest is the #1 shopping platform among millennials, and 63% of millennials use Pinterest to discover new brands or products to buy.

Pinterest users also have significant purchasing power, since 50% of them earn $50K or greater per year and 10% make more than $125K.

  1. Pinterest is a boon for ecommerce brands

The place where you want your product is right in front of your consumers and Pinterest offers the perfect product placement in its visual newsfeed.

With Pinterest, your consumers see your products as they scroll across their newsfeed. so your Pins land in front of the eyes of new people who may have never before heard of your brand or product.

Pinterest also offers some features that are uniquely friendly to ecommerce websites.

  • Rich Pins allow you to display your product prices and other important information. There are four types of Rich Pins: app, product, recipe and article.
  • Product Pins make shopping easier for ecommerce websites. They include real-time pricing, availability and where to buy your product.
  • Buyable Pins let people buy your products without ever leaving Pinterest. People can easily spot these Pins all over Pinterest—in search results, in related Pins and on your business profile.

A study by Shopify found that orders driven by Pinterest are substantially larger than those produced by Facebook or Twitter. In fact, at $80 per order, Pinterest even tops Google and Amazon.

  1. Pins have a long shelf life

Unlike other social networks where content has a very short shelf-life, content on Pinterest lasts for months.

It takes a pin 3.5 months to get 50% of its engagement, and a Pin can, on average, live for 7 months. Compare that to Twitter’s 7 minutes, which is the average lifetime of a Tweet!

Content lifespan on social networks
Source: Smartbrief.com

Other interesting facts:

  • The average pin is repinned 11 times.
  • 80% of all pins are repins.
  • Over 5% of all referral traffic to websites comes from Pinterest.

10 Things You Must Do Before Starting Your Pinterest Promotions

Pinterest can be easily integrated with your website, but there are some things you need to do to ensure that your website is optimized for Pinterest promotions.

  1. Optimize your website for mobile users

85% of all Pinterest searches happen on mobile. And the entire web is going mobile, so having a mobile-optimized website is a must.

  1. Create a Pinterest Business account

You need to create a Pinterest Business account to access advanced analytics that will give you insights into what people love most from your Pinterest profile and website.

Pinterest analytics will also tell you which Pins drive traffic back to your site and who your Pinterest audience is, including gender, location and other interests.

  1. Verify your website on Pinterest

This is a simple step of adding a piece of code to your website, which your developer can do for you. If your website runs on WordPress, follow the instructions here to verify your website on Pinterest.

  1. Pin actionable, evergreen content

Since content on Pinterest lasts for months, you should only Pin evergreen content – content that is always relevant – to your boards.

You may be tempted to pin deals and discounts that expire, but if Pinterest users find these months later, they may be unhappy to know that they are no longer valid.

The best content showcases information that is inspirational and actionable. Create content on your blog and Pins that help Pinners do things in real life.

  1. Create free downloadable content for a lead-funnel

Offer Pinterest users a freebie, something they can download – an eBook or a product catalogue or discount coupon to get them to visit your website. Check out the Pin I created for my Work-From-Home eBook.

  1. Fill up your profile and optimize your bio and Pins

Remember that Pinterest is a search engine, so if you want to get found for certain keywords, create a bio that contains those keywords. Include a call-to-action in your bio and Pins.

  1. Use eye-catching images in your Pins

Pinterest users scroll through their feed pretty quickly, so your images have to stand out to get noticed. Add text to your pins to make it clear what you’re offering.

Use a 2:3 aspect ratio for your Pins, as vertical Pins look best in the newsfeed. Pinterest recommends a minimum size of 600 x 900px. Check out the Naaree board on Pinterest to see what I mean.

Brand your pins – use your brand colours, fonts, logo or URL in your pins. Design videos for mobile and make them square (1:1) or portrait (9:16).

  1. Implement social sharing buttons for Pinterest

You can place a “Pin It” button on your site and over your images when your mouse hovers over them, making it easy for Pinners to pin your site and share your content.

  1. Use a scheduler to schedule Pins at the best times of day

To get the best results from Pinterest, you need to Pin regularly and consistently. Use an approved Pinterest scheduler, like Tailwind, to schedule 20-30 pins per day to your boards.

  1. Optimize your Pin descriptions

Write helpful descriptions for your Pins, use keywords in your Pin descriptions and feel free to include #hashtags.

Use a separate Alt text for Google. Your image’s alt text should be used to describe what the image is, not to add a description for Pinterest. The Tasty Pins WordPress Plugin makes it easy to optimize your blog’s images for Pinterest, SEO, and screen readers.

You can set descriptions for your images that will perform well in Pinterest search, include hashtags, keywords, and whatever else you wish. You can add a hidden Pinterest-specific image on your website front-end with the click of a button and even disable Pinning on certain images.

Conclusion:

As a visual search engine, Pinterest keeps changing its algorithm. If you want to stay updated on its latest rules and best practices, level up your Pinterest skills, and get the support you need, check out the Pinterest Traffic Avalanche course.

Once you get good with Pinterest, you can even start a new side business as a Pinterest Virtual Assistant. This highly coveted niche is in demand by bloggers and business owners alike. Start practising your skills with this free Pinterest VA Prep Book.

And finally, download this free Pinterest Marketing Guide PDF so you can store all the information in this article, as well as some awesome Pinterest marketing tools and resources, on your desktop where you can refer to it anytime.

© Priya Florence Shah

Pinterest Marketing Tutorial - How To Use Pinterest For Business Growth

Beauty Courses In India

Top Beauty Courses In India: Start Your Career As A Beauty Professional

Do you want to become a beauty professional? It’s definitely a glamorous career and there’s a massive market for beauty services. As a beauty professional, you can work at a beauty parlour, take on a beauty franchise with a bigger brand or start your own beauty salon if you want to work from home.

There are many opportunities in beauty services and beauty therapist courses in India are in high demand. People who have been in the industry for longer gradually pick up skills in different beauty services.

It is not feasible to study all these courses at once, but here are the top beauty course categories in India in which you can complete a specialization that can promptly open up opportunities for you.

  • Skincare courses – Skincare and aesthetics professionals are in high demand for people who have problem skin, acne or other skin issues.
  • Makeup artist courses – Everyone wants to make a positive first appearance which is why makeup artists are in high demand.
  • Hairstylist courses – Women in India are proud of their hair and like it to look good, making this an evergreen course.
  • Cosmetology courses – This sets the foundation for becoming a professional makeup artist
  • Nail beauty and nail art courses – In high demand during holidays and weddings when people have to look glam with henna and nail polish art.
  • Spa courses – Teaches massage and other physiotherapy techniques which are in high demand. Very good job prospects.

Because of high demand, competition is stiff as more people get into the beauty industry to get a piece of the pie. This means you have to get top-notch training to make a name for yourself in the market.

Here are the best institutes for beauty courses in India where you can join world-class beauty training courses that will give you a better chance of success in the massive beauty industry.

Top 5 Beauty Schools In India

  1. VLCC Institute

This is one of the best beauty schools in India for hair stylists and make-up artists. The courses offered here include:

  • Aesthetics
  • Hair Dressing and Hair Styling Techniques
  • Makeup
  • Nails
  • Nutrition
  • Spa Therapies
  1. Pearl Academy

Experts in the industry have compared the beauty training offered here as matching that in Europe and the US. The courses are in depth and take longer than in other schools, lasting 3 terms of 13 weeks each.

Some of the courses offered include:

  • Drama makeup
  • Hair styling
  • Beauty makeup
  • Mani-Pedi
  • Massage
  1. Shahnaz Husain Beauty Academy

According to the website, Shahnaz Husain is the pioneer of professional beauty training in India. She started her beauty training school nearly four decades ago, at a time when only apprenticeship training was available.

The Shahnaz Husain beauty training academy offers courses that equip the student with expertise in all aspects of beauty care. Their professional Diploma Courses, which comprises both theoretical knowledge and practical skills, keeps abreast with the international standards.

The Diploma Course also covers clinic and business management, as well as client handling. Students are given knowledge of sound salon management and the investments required to open one’s own salon, along with techniques of making the venture a profitable one. A minimum school leaving certificate is enough to start training in beauty.

  1. Lakmé Academy

Lakmé Lever operates India’s leading chain of beauty treatment & fashion – Lakmé Salon – that offers expert services in hairstyling, skin & beauty care, with a presence of over 260 salons across 60 plus cities.

Lakmé Academy powered by Aptech Limited – a global retail and corporate training solutions provider – is a partnership between two industry stalwarts with decades of experience in their respective fields.

Lakmé Academy offers courses in:

  • Cosmetology (Advanced)
  • Skin Care (Basic & Advanced)
  • Hair Care (Basic, Advanced & Short-Term courses)
  • Make-Up (Basic, Advanced & Short-Term courses)
  • Personal Grooming
  1. Fat Mu Pro Make-Up School

This beauty institute has been associated with Bollywood celebs like Danny Boyle and Zoya Akhtar. It offers both short and long beauty courses including;

  • 8 Week Pro Makeup Course
  • 3 Week Fashion & Beauty Course
  • 2 Hours Non-Pro Makeup Course
  • 1 Week Intro Makeup Course

Online Beauty Courses In India

Basic Facial Course

To take this course, you need a professional beauty license, either a cosmetology or esthetician, as this class is designed for the beauty professional who is interested in learning basic facial treatment techniques.

You’ll need a PC, tablet or smartphone to access this course and a printer to print out the worksheet. You’ll also need a treatment room with facial products and a model to practice your basic facial techniques on.

What you’ll learn:

  • The ability to perform a basic facial.
  • Explain the benefits of a facial to your clients
  • Choose the best product to treat the client’s skin type and condition
  • Be able to perform a facial massage

Click to browse the course here

Fundamental Beauty & Contouring Technique

Danessa Myricks brings the incredible techniques of Face Contouring and Fundamental Beauty together in this comprehensive course, which includes extensive Step-by-Step Demonstrations on how to contour your face while working with various skin tones and face shapes.

  • By the end of this course, you will be able to sculpt and reshape faces
  • Create flawless, natural finishes on the skin
  • Use tone and texture to enhance features or diminish imperfection
  • You will learn how to choose the perfect foundation tones for your client
  • You will learn how to select and use contouring brushes and how to use powders when contouring

This face contouring course provides information on how to select the right tools and build a solid contouring kit and Danessa makes the principles of contouring and fundamental beauty dynamic and engaging with Quick Tips, Before and After Images and Excerpts from her Power of Contouring Book.

Click to browse the course here.

Become a Superstar Nail Art Tech & Start Your Own Nail Salon

Learn how to do stunning nail designs. This course is for anyone who wants to become a Nail art Technician and want to learn manicure. It covers easy and important methods to do nail Art and to do manicure and to grow nails faster. You’ll learn:

  • Design for beginners
  • Polka Dot design
  • Blended colour design
  • Water marbled design
  • Manicure using Salon techniques
  • Methods to grow nails strong and long
  • Learn to start your own Nail Salon

Click to browse the course here.

There are plenty of opportunities in the Indian beauty industry for any professionally trained person. Pick a good course at a good school and you will open many doors.

Also read: How To Start A Beauty Salon Business: 6 Steps To Success

Top Beauty Courses In India: Start Your Career As A Beauty Professional

Virtual assistant

6 Steps To Start A Virtual Assistant Business From Home

There are more online businesses than ever and the number keeps growing. The beauty of ecommerce is that you do not have to maintain a physical office.

But online business owners still have to take care of administrative tasks like picking calls, scheduling appointments, filing the inventory and so on. This is where a virtual assistant comes in.

A virtual assistant (or VA) handles routine stuff for small business owners who may not have the time or skills to handle these tasks.

If you’re not sure how viable a VA career is or whether it’s right for you, read these Virtual Assistant success stories to inspire you. Here’s a checklist to becoming a virtual assistant to get you started.

  1. Get your equipment ready

You will need a computer with a high-speed internet connection. You need good quality headphones with an attached mike for video conferencing. You’ll most likely have to get on calls with clients to discuss their business, so you need to have all this equipment in place and working.

Many laptops come embedded with a webcam, but you can buy a separate webcam for higher quality images. It’s a good idea to invest in quality equipment so you can ensure it doesn’t fail when you need it most.

  1. Setup a working space

You can allocate space in the living room, but if the distractions are too much, you can clear one bedroom or extra room to use as your office.

Get a good computer desk and an ergonomic chair with back support. You will need it as you will be sitting for a good amount of time at your desk.

Remember to get up and walk around every 20 minutes or so to prevent health issues that result from too much sitting.

  1. Register on freelance sites

Freelance sites are the best places to start your search for clients who want to outsource virtual assistant jobs. Some of the older and trusted freelance sites include Fiverr, Guru and Upwork.

The most important thing you need to do is create an attractive profile. List your skills carefully.  Include referral links and contacts, so your profile appears more professional.

You might want to list niche skills which do not have high competition, for example, Oracle database maintenance, or Pinterest marketing. Browse the most-requested skills and see if you fit the profile.

This Virtual Assistant Guide will walk you step-by-step through the entire process. As a result, you’ll set a strong business foundation, select your niche(s) and even find and pitch prospective clients.

If you’re unsure what services you can offer that people actually need and will pay for, download this list of 150+ VA Services. It will bring some new ideas to mind and provide you with the inspiration you need to level-up your VA services.

  1. Determine your pricing

When you’re starting out, competition will be stiff and you may have to quote a lower amount to attract customers. But setting your price too low comes across as suspect.

Take a look at what the others are charging and instead of offering a lower price, offer additional services or perks so that your bid comes across as more competitive without seeming less competent.

If you want to eliminate the guesswork involved in launching (and growing) your successful virtual assistant business, check out this Virtual Assistant Guide.

  1. Create a professional website

A website allows you to showcase and market your skills better. With the latest web development technology, it’s easy to make a website even you have don’t have any technical knowledge.

You can also start a blog to boost the search rankings of your website and capture reader emails so you can follow up with potential clients looking for VA services.

Make a video of yourself at work and post it. You can also upload it to YouTube for a wider audience. Enable a live chat option on your website,  so as to communicate directly to interested clients.

Have a ‘Hire me’ page where you can make a pitch to potential clients. Provide testimonials from former clients to boost your credibility. Watch this Breaking Into VA Work Webinar to understand more about what it takes to break into this field.

  1. Promote your virtual assistant business

The next step is to market and grow your virtual assistant business. Advertising can get clients faster. Start with Facebook advertising. It is easy to set up Facebook ads and they don’t cost the Earth.

The good thing about Facebook is that you can do very precise targeting by interests, careers, geographic location, and so on. Set up a campaign on Google as well to capture people doing a search for services such as yours.

Also update your LinkedIn profile, headline and summary to state clearly what you have to offer your clients and the field you specialize in.

This Virtual Assistant Guide helps new and aspiring virtual assistants start and grow a VA business from scratch. It will help you become a virtual assistant (VA) in 30 days or less, using skills you already have (or by learning a few new ones).

A virtual assistant business offers freedom and flexibility and is relatively easy and affordable to set up. Start a virtual assistant business in India from your home today and take advantage of this amazing opportunity to work from home.

Start A Virtual Assistant Business From Home - A checklist and a virtual assistant guide to get you started.

5 Work-From-Home Resources To Get You Back To Work At Any Age

I’ve been working from home since 2001. It was not a choice for me. It was something I just had to do because as a new mom, I just wasn’t willing to leave my child at home with a maid I didn’t trust and go out to earn a living.

The internet had just come to India and I was learning to build and publish websites. As a writer and journalist, I knew that I had to find a way to make a living online. It took many months of hard work, working long hours, often with my baby asleep in my lap, but I made it work.

Today I’m an online publisher and have a social media agency that helps clients create more visibility and branding online. And 18 years later, I still work from home.

At Naaree.com, one of my most common queries is – how do I start working from home. Now from experience, I know that is not a question that can be answered in a single blog post, even a very long one.

Instead, I went looking for some of the best, most highly rated sources of information online.  These are books that you can buy or download on Amazon.in and that you can get access to almost immediately and get started on your journey to becoming a WAHM (work-at-home-mom).

You’ll find a resource below that will work for you no matter what your age or whether you want a job or a home business idea. So, I give to you these 5 work-from-home resources to get you back to work at any age.

  1. Work at Home Now: The No-Nonsense Guide to Finding Your Perfect Home-Based Job, Avoiding Scams, and Making a Great Living

Work at Home Now: The No-Nonsense Guide to Finding Your Perfect Home-Based Job, Avoiding Scams, and Making a Great LivingMany legitimate home-based jobs and projects can be found online, but trustworthy guidance is scarce. Worse, with a 56-to-1 scam ratio in work-at-home ads, the terrain is a minefield of fraud.

Nevertheless, customer service agents, researchers, test scorers, tutors, writers, and concierges are just a few of the many people regularly hired to work from home. In Work at Home Now, you’ll learn:

* The top insider tips on good and bad Google search terms.

* How to find the needles in the haystack on Craigslist, Indeed, Monster, CareerBuilder, and other big sites.

* Where the real jobs for mystery shoppers, transcriptionists, and similar part-time specialities can be found and more.

Click here to buy your copy

  1. Will Work from Home: Earn the Cash–Without the CommuteWill Work from Home: Earn the Cash--Without the Commute

Many people already spend 12 hours a day getting to work, working, getting home from work. Here’s some good news: thanks to advances in technology, acceptance of outsourcing, the trend towards corporate flextime, and other factors, working from home is easier than ever.

With real-life stories, a step-by-step plan, resource guides, and lists of scams to avoid, this is the book that will help readers finally “make the leap” and show them that they don’t have to give up their family, creativity, or peace of mind to earn a decent salary.

Click here to buy your copy

  1. 300 + Companies That Pay You to Work from Home: Legit Work at Home Jobs and Answers to Questions About Your Favorite Work at Home Companies

300 + Companies That Pay You to Work from Home: Legit Work at Home Jobs and Answers to Questions About Your Favorite Work at Home CompaniesA compiled list of the latest companies hiring home people to work at home right from their home office. These jobs are intended for anyone who has the desire to stay at home and earn money without having to commute to work.

The companies are legitimate and include but not limited to customer service, data entry, virtual assistants, chat agents, moderators, content writers, and so many other areas.

There is even a section on how you can make money on social media, some payment proofs, examples of work at home scams and how to avoid them and companies that pay at least $10 an hour to work from home.

Whether you are a stay at home mom or dad, student, teenager, retired, disabled or just prefer to use your computer to earn extra money, there is something in this book for you.

Click here to buy your copy

  1. Best Home Businesses for People 50+: 70+ Businesses You Can Start From Home in Middle-Age or RetirementBest Home Businesses for People 50+: 70+ Businesses You Can Start From Home in Middle-Age or Retirement

Here is a comprehensive guide to starting and running a home-based business in midlife and retirement.

The Best Home Businesses for People 50+ features seventy comprehensive profiles that show how to select, start, run, and build a home-based business suited to the needs, talents, and ideals of the over-fifty generation.

Profiles of successful business owners and a treasury of online and easy-to-access resources round out The Best Home Businesses for People 50+ to create an indispensable resource for this new generation of career-oriented seniors.

Click here to buy your copy

  1. How to Work at Home with Small ChildrenHow to Work at Home with Small Children

Amy Shankland’s book, How to Work at Home with Small Children, is an easy-to-read guide that helps new parents answer this question. It gives parents tips on how to prepare for a work at home career; ideas on what type of job to either create or look for that is suitable for working at home with little ones; how to plan a work day; and how to overcome problems.

Click here to buy your copy

Remember that building a new career or business takes hard work and sacrifice. Working at home is amazing, but it comes with its own set of challenges. My hope is that these books will help you face and overcome those challenges.

Disclosure: Priya Florence Shah is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.in.

Work from home resources

How Community Homestays Are Empowering Women In Nepal

The mist rolled over the hills around Panauti village as we sat in the first-floor balcony of our hostess, Sabita’s home. We watched it cover the terraced fields around the house and felt the chill of the wind on our bare arms.

My fellow-traveller Katrin, a travel agent from Germany, our tour guide, Sushila, and I were enjoying a cup of tea with Sabita, chatting with her about her life and her family. Her 18-year old daughter, Monika, joined us, speaking with us in fluent English.

We were staying with Sabita for the night, courtesy of CommunityHomestay.com, a community-based Homestay network that “connects global-travellers with the real people of Nepal for a genuine local travel experience.”

I was in Nepal as a hosted delegate attending the Himalayan Travel Mart 2018. Before the conference, we were taken on a trip to Panauti village, about 1.5 hours from Kathmandu, for the Homestay experience.

An initiative from Royal Mountain Travel, Community Homestay allows tourists to get an authentic feel of village life in Nepal. Here, the host family welcomes you as a guest and a friend, sharing their home and way of life with you.

My interest in Community Homestay’s initiatives in Nepal stemmed from their efforts to encourage women’s empowerment and help preserve and value their traditional skills.

Most of the owners of the Homestays are women and housewives, so this platform helps the women and local communities of Nepal generate sustainable economic opportunities as part of a responsible tourism initiative.

As a guest in a Homestay in Panauti, you can learn to cook like a local from the host family, explore the community life with them, learn native skills, such as rice planting, and see their perspective on life. You can also volunteer to teach in one of the schools or assist with the rebuilding of classrooms damaged in the devastating earthquake of 2015.

When my fellow-travellers and I first arrived in Panauti by mini-bus, we were welcomed by a group of women in bright red saris who garlanded us and applied the traditional tikka to greet us.

One of the young girls gave a speech in perfect English, introducing us to the community Homestay initiative and explained how it helps village women create financial independence for themselves and their families. She told us there were currently 17 families in Panauti involved in the Homestays, with more joining soon.

20 percent of the earnings from the Homestays in Panauti village is channelled back into the community, for instance, by supporting a child’s education. So the Homestays not only uplift the women but the community as a whole, too.

The women are taught English through classes in the village, hold cooking classes for their guests and get to earn money doing exactly what they have been doing all their lives – taking care of others. Most of them are uneducated and many were married off at an early age, so they have few skills to support themselves.

Sabita’s Story

Our hostess, Sabita, is a 37-year old mother of two. She was married off at the age of 14 years and had her first child at 16. She has not studied beyond the 3rd standard.

Her husband is a retired army officer who works as a security guard in Saudi Arabia, sends money home, and comes home a few times a year. Their elder daughter has migrated to Australia and the younger daughter, Monika, with whom she lives, is learning English in the hope of moving there, too.

With almost no education and no marketable skills, Sabita would be hard-pressed to find a job. However, for the last 5 years, she has been hosting guests in her beautiful Homestay at the top of a small hill.

In the last year, she has earned an income of 1.5 lakh rupees from Homestays alone. She also has a regular renter, a tourist who has been staying with her for a year.

A stay at her house usually costs $25 a night, including all meals. Sabita is an exceptional cook. We enjoyed our meals with her and chipped in to help her make aloo parathas for dinner.

One of my favourite dishes was a sort of chutney she made out of dried vegetables and spices. It was so delicious, I told her she should bottle it and sell it. She replied that Nepalis don’t like to eat processed or bottled foods, preferring to make them fresh for every meal.

All Homestays are expected to maintain certain standards as far as hygiene and comfort are concerned. Sabita’s house was very comfortable indeed. We had piping hot water for bathing from a solar water heater, cosy quilts to tuck ourselves in during the night and a beautiful view of the fields and hills.

For Indian tourists who want to experience authentic Nepali village life, living in a Homestay in Nepal would be just like coming home. The food is very much like Indian food (almost the same, actually), the language is not difficult to understand, and the hosts are warm, friendly and hospitable.

For a responsible and authentic travel experience in Nepal, you can’t beat a Community Homestay. You will learn how people in Nepal actually live and help them generate economic opportunities from their very own houses and their unique culture.

You will also get to give back to people still rebuilding their nation from the devastation of the 2015 earthquake. You can choose from Homestays all over Nepal by browsing the website here.

© Priya Florence Shah is Publisher and Editor of Naaree.com. She also publishes a travel blog.

For a responsible and authentic travel experience in Nepal, you can’t beat a Community Homestay. You will learn how people in Nepal actually live and help them generate economic opportunities from their very own houses and their unique culture. #Nepal #homestay #responsibletravel

Domestic Abuse And Tough Love: Taking Care Of Your Inner Child

If you had a child that was being bullied or abused in school, what would you do?

Would you merely listen, albeit empathetically, fob it off with, “Don’t worry, I’m here for you whatever you choose to do,” and then walk away to get on with ‘more important’ things?

No, you would not. As a parent, you would, with every breath in your body, fight for your child’s well-being and their right to be safe.

So why don’t we do that for our inner child? That child inside of all of us that yearns to be safe and cared for. That vulnerable part of us that wants to know we will take action on its behalf should someone abuse or bully us.

Yet, many, many women and men ignore their inner child day after day, year after year, with devastating consequences.

And every time we do that – every time we allow someone to abuse us, put us down or traumatize us without standing up for ourselves – our inner child crawls ever further into its shell, hurt by the betrayal of being let down by the only adult it has to care for it – our self.

This betrayal of one’s inner child leads to feelings of low self-worth and low self-esteem – which only promotes further abuse – a cycle that’s increasingly hard to escape from.

Being there for your inner child, protecting that vulnerable part of oneself, means refusing to tolerate abuse in any form. It means understanding that your feelings of hurt, of sadness, of betrayal, need to be dealt with, not pushed away.

Whether you choose to do that in sessions with a therapist or go it alone is up to you. But if you’re not willing to do it, nobody can do it for you – not the police, nor a lawyer, nor the courts.

None of them is here to take care of your inner child. You are.

Also, read: 

If you know a friend suffering domestic abuse…

For friends who listen to the stories of those suffering from domestic violence and abuse, you should know that there’s only so much one can do as the sympathetic shoulder to cry on. Playing the part of a passive sounding-board only provides temporary relief and attention.

Once the person has unloaded their grief on you, they will go back to living their dismal lives and continue to tolerate the abuse they just complained to you about, without doing anything to change it.

Ultimately every person in an abusive or self-destructive situation has to hit rock-bottom – a place where they finally say, NO MORE! At this point, they can either choose to hit back at their abuser, leave the abusive situation or start to listen to their inner child and take better care of themselves.

No one can help us reach that place. No matter how you want them to change, remember that’s what YOU want. But do THEY want it too? You must let them reach the place of personal choice themselves, or with the help of a professional.

Once they decide that enough is enough, this is the point at which you can step in. Whether it is for a safe place to spend the night or assistance with finances or help with getting a job – it is at this point you can be the best friend you always wanted to be for them.

Until people decide that they want to change, there is nothing you can do to change them. Not convincing, cajoling, logic or reason. Until the heart decides it, the mind will not follow.

Yes, it is painful to stand by and watch someone go through the pain and anguish of hitting rock-bottom. But it’s often the only thing we can do without getting sucked into a vortex of negativity ourselves.

The best thing you can do if you have someone in your life who’s suffering from domestic abuse is to practice good self-care and take care of your own inner child, so you can be there for them when they finally decide to take action.

If you have to distance yourself for a while to do that, so be it. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by their complaints and know they don’t plan on taking action, offer to take them to a therapist to deal with their feelings.

Let your friend or family member know that, should they wish to change their life, you will be there for them. Don’t let yourself be emotionally wrecked by their toxicity and self-destructive behaviour and don’t feel guilty for choosing yourself over them.

Focus on your own feelings and deal with your own anger and sadness, so that you can be objective for your friend when they need it. You cannot help them from a damaged place, only from a place of healing.

Author bio:

Priya Florence Shah is editor of Naaree.com and the author of From Doormat to Devi: 10 Steps to Stop Overfunctioning in Relationships and Take Your Life Back, which shows you a step-by-step way to get back control of your life starting today. You can connect with her @PriyaFlorence

Being there for your inner child, protecting that vulnerable part of oneself, means refusing to tolerate abuse in any form.