Saturday, February 23, 2019

Develop Your Referral Network by Getting Involved in Your Community

Running a business off referrals is the gold standard of having an established name. You do such great work and have such a great product that people share you as a resource! This is when advertising for new customers takes less time and maintaining relationships takes a little more. Referrals is where you want to be in the long run.

When you can run your business on referrals everything becomes easier. People see you as a credible business and are actively passing your name. These referrals indicate that your business is working well within its social networks.

What is a social network? It is a system in which people act and interact on each other. They share information and resources. They defend each other and look out for each other's needs. In essence, they are system of people.

Getting in with the right people makes a difference in your business. If groups of people see you as credible and like what you have to offer they will naturally want to share that resource with others. For example, if you need estate planning then why not go to someone everyone knows?

Get involved in relationships building. That means get involved in your local business community. Join associations, do charity work, connect with people and be seen. The more you can put yourself in front of the right people with your card the better off you will be! Make sure you brush up on your elevator speech because you may only get once chance to sell. :)

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Social Media Sites that Generate Leads

Marketing is about spending your time wisely and reaching those people who are most likely to need your product. We can waste a great amount of time marketing on the wrong channels and getting very little return. This is one of the reasons why it is beneficial to include ROI calculations for each channel.  When you are marketing wisely you will often find....

1. Lower amount of time spent attracting clients.

2. Higher return on investment of monies spent.

3. More motivated customers that are willing to make a purchase.

Not all sites are build the same. Social media is a growing method of reaching people. The Internet offers opportunities for people to connect and share information and knowledge. It is that sharing capacity that is currently driving marketing.

Consider a number of different social media sites....

Facebook-You can do a lot of stuff with Facebook that is easy to use and ready made.

Twitter-A lot of people watch twitter everyday. I get most of my hits from there.

Instagram-Put up a picture or flyer and people share it.

YouTube-Create a video that people want to watch and this can lead to influence.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Focus on Solving Customer Problems For More Sales

Your customer should be your #1 priority! Selling isn't so much about making a sale as it is about helping your clients achieve their goals. Your job is to fulfill those needs and entice them with solutions a way that motivates them to seek more information. If you focus on the customer's goals, needs, and problems you are going to improve your sales through providing greater value.

Customers Are Goal Directed

Customers don't often just walk into a store randomly. Most customers having something in mind when they are shopping. These ideas many not be fully formed such as "looking for a great deal" but could include "I want socks on sale but will consider other items as well".

Understanding what the customer is looking for helps in directing them to things they may want. Sometimes it is beneficial to just ask what they are looking for while at others times you should intuitively understand and help them form an opinion of what they want.

Customers Have Needs and Wants

Customers also have needs and wants beyond their goals. Most of the time they may not even be aware of those needs. For example, a customer may want to fit in and be appreciated and therefore buys certain status symbols that help feel positive about their self-image.

Sometimes it isn't always apparent what those needs are. You sort of have to listen, watch, look at evaluate their clothing, see how they act, and get a "feel" for who they are. We often can pick up on these needs when we are more in tune with the subconscious signals they are giving.

Stay Focused on The Customer

Your here to serve your customers and not yourself! As soon as your customer gets a whiff your trying to sell to them then they are gone! Make sure you always relate to their needs and solve their problems. Focus on what they want and keep the conversation moving in the right direction.

Marketing help that will put your business on the next level!

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Using Guerrilla Marketing to Get Results!

Mastering Guerrilla marketing can make all the difference in whether or not you gain a new client or you don't!. The term indicates some type of combat attack on clients occurs which doesn't really do the process any justice. It more accurately entails using multiple methods of reaching a client through uniqueness. You don't just introduce them once, you introduce them multiple ways with something that doesn't cost much and is personalized to them.

You can create a guerrilla marketing process that you can operate with potential customers. The type of business you run will determine precisely how you want to do this. Creating a plan on how you are going to guerrilla market to your customers can create the highest impact.

Here is a great generic process.....

1. Introduction and elevator speech.

2. Follow Up

3. Send them a personalized email

4. Offer them something unique to their business.

That is a process but you also need to do something unique that attracts them. So think about how each of these sections can be slightly adjusted to make it more memorable. For example, if you are sending them something unique, offering a special discount, or be willing to go above and beyond.

Make each point of interaction catered, fun and special. If you want business owners to take the time to look at what you are offering then you should keep them engaged through positive and fun interaction.

Friday, February 15, 2019

How to Keep in Contact With Customers?

If you are a small business you can't always afford those expensive customer relationship management systems (CRM) the big companies use. More than ever you need to stay in close contact with your customers as you know small business thrives on its relationships. Without some type of database system you are unlikely to remember all the details that allow you to maximize your sales. I like to use Excel to create a customer spreadsheet and then ensure I am maintaining my relationships.

1. Excel: Put in demographic columns for name, phone, email, etc... Make sure you put in a column or two that discusses contacts and conversations.

2. Keep it Maintained: If you are selling services or pricy products you will want to keep this sheet up-to-date with sales, conversations, likes/dislikes, etc...

3. Follow-Up After the Sale: Follow-up with sale and ensure the customer is still happy. An unhappy customers won't come back!

4. Reach Out from Time-to-Time: If you want to establish a relationship you will need to check in on customers from time to time.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Looking Glass Theory Shows us How Some Executives Hold Themselves Back

One of the biggest obstacles that hold executives back from success is themselves! You would think all executives are confident but that isn't necessarily true; they are human like the rest of us. When executives lack confidence they may have a difficult time pulling ahead and could even be inadvertently self-sabotaging their own successes. To truly unlock your potential you will want to review your true and false self through the Looking Glass Self Theory.

Executives often hold themselves back!

Started in 1902 by Charles Horton Cooley the theory states that how our identities are formed are through the eyes of other people (Lumen).  This means that we only understand ourselves when we interact with other people. It is this interaction that helps us form our first identities.

The very beginning of our lives is formed through our first contacts which include sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers and close relatives. If you have a positive first experience you will be healthier than if you were traumatized. Likewise, if your family worked in skilled labor much of your identity might be tied to this.

How we are viewed impacts how people interact with us and the feedback they give us. While many times this is accurate it is also possible that the information is not accurate or you have the wrong impression of yourself.

Lets look at an example. Tom is a creative and intelligence executive but views himself as not worthy of his successes. He may end up self-sabotaging by missing deadlines, making dumb mistakes, and cutting corners. As an executive he is slowly putting nails in his coffin.

The problem is that Tom has the skills but doesn't believe he has the skills. To free himself he must evaluate his beginnings and understand how he formed his primary identity. That identity was carried forward throughout his life and impacted almost everything else. The information presented to Tom may have been inaccurate and if he comes to understand that Tom could be very successful.

How to Look Through Your Own Glass?

1.) Understand that your early experiences often formulate your identity.

2.) Understand that certain life events impact how you view yourself.

3.) If you begin to take a more objective view of yourself you may have a different impression.

4.) The difference between those who are successful and those who are not is confidence.

5.) Find your core identity and skills. Relate to people on that level.

6.) Never let anyone tell you who you are without evaluating whether they are accurate or have certain motivations they are struggling with.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Using Desktop for Instagram App to Market Your Business

Instagram is a great resources for marketing purposes. A single picture might create enough buzz to put a business on the "map". The social sharing site works well with cell phones because the community is focused on spreading thoughts and ideas (the very essence of a community). People who want to edit their marketing pictures before sending them may be at a loss. The Desktop for Instagram App makes it very easy to post these pictures from your computer.

There is a way to upload pictures to Instagram from your desktop without using this free software. I tried it and wasted about an hour and never got it to work. Perhaps there was a difference in the technologies being used.

Companies use Instagram for marketing purposes by uploading pictures and other content people may find useful. With a billion monthly users (Statista) it makes sense for companies to start using this platform.

One of the advantages is that most of the young people are already using this system and Instagram offers an excellent way to keep in touch. Even if you are a local business many young people may follow you anyway. When you have a sale or event to post go ahead and create a flyer and upload.

One of the reasons why the Desktop for Instagram App is handy is that you can edit your pictures before uploading. Cell phones don't often have this capacity and don't have the most powerful editing program. Your desktop makes it possible to post a picture from your hard drive.

What Can You Do to Market Your Business for Under $500?

Small businesses have lots of enthusiasm but lack the marketing budgets needed to get their business kick started. That creates a problem as 8 out of 10 new businesses fail within the first few years. Not all business owners have the time and knowledge needed to run their own marketing campaigns and soon find their enthusiasm drained by practical considerations.

Getting marketing help can be very expensive!  Certainly you can do these things on your own, and I can honestly say that most of the time this is best. Larger businesses can hire people with knowledge but small businesses will have to take on a "do it yourself" mentality. There are few places for small businesses with limited budgets can receive help.

It is beneficial if small businesses quickly start working with someone to develop a solid marketing plan and begin to earn revenue immediately! Once they have gained the knowledge and abilities needed run their own campaigns they can choose to market themselves. Those who want to focus on their core product without worrying about marketing can find a marketing company to help them.

Suggestion 1: Work with someone who has marketing knowledge.

Suggestion 2: Create a marketing strategy and implement accordingly.

What You Can Do for Under $500....

1.) Content Creation: Content is king in the new Google algorithms. Write an article and have it sent to 100's of directories to improve search rankings

2.) Marketing Displays: Have a jpeg and HTML displays created that you can use in your emails, Facebook, Instagram and other campaigns.

3.) Blog Marketing: Have your advertisements sent to qualified blogs in the same fields.

4.) Business Cards: Get business cards that sell your business.

5.) Develop a Plan: Develop a low cost plan that fits with your small business goals and needs.

Need a marketing plan for under $500?

Monday, February 11, 2019

Database Management Should Be Part of Marketing Student Learning

Graduating students have new responsibilities to deal with, manage, and manipulate data. With the advent of online marketing and increasing use of customer information it is important to store and understand data. Without the proper database management skills it will be difficult for marketers to reorganization data in a way that leads to more meaningful marketing results.

How Does That Skill Help While Working?

Lets say you are selling product "bubbles". As you source potential candidates you will come across those that are either interested in your product or have already made a purchase. That sourcing can come from any number of different sources ranging from content marketing to cold calls. Once you have talked to someone you should input the information into your database.

What does the Database do for Sales?

Tracking leads, understanding customer preferences, and following up on previous contacts makes a huge differences. Databases collect information that are likely to be useful for sales or customer service. As the database gets populated with information and opportunities it is possible to scan that database for resources as well as generate useful reports.

What Type of Information Should a Business Collect?

That depends on the type of business someone operates. One business may only need email, phone number, name, address, and purchase history. B2B sales may need lots of detailed notes that allow you to understand complex solutions and information.

How to Teach Students Database Management?

It is helpful for students to understand the broader reasons for database management that includes feedback loops, research, and customer impressions. Yet that isn't all of it. They also need very specific information on how to use those databases. It is wise to expose them to simple databases that can be created using basic software as well as industry specific databases.

"Get the Word Out" About Your Business.....and Relax!

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Why Some Businesses Should Hire Marketing Consultants?

Companies are turning to marketing consultants to help them achieve marketing goals while staying within budget. It is said that marketing is 90% of business and without it you really don't have a business. Find an affordable marketing consultant that can help you achieve your sales goals while allowing you to focus on what you do best!

1. They Don't Have Internal Knowledge: Some businesses don't have sufficient marketing internal knowledge and should consider hiring a marketing consultant.

2. Focus on Core Business: Businesses should focus on what they do best so they can raise their income.

3. Sales Revenue is Declining: Misalignment of the marketing strategy or declining sales needs an improved strategy.