Category: Marketing

11 TIPS TO HELP YOU INCREASE YOUR REPEAT BUSINESS

11 TIPS TO HELP YOU INCREASE YOUR REPEAT BUSINESS

It takes a lot of time to find new prospects and turn them into customers. It is much more cost-effective to turn existing customers into repeat customers.

I am not saying that you should stop going after new customers, just don’t neglect your current customers in your hunt for new ones.

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HOW INBOUND MARKETING AND CONTENT CAN DRAW PROSPECTS TO YOUR BUSINESS

HOW INBOUND MARKETING AND CONTENT CAN DRAW PROSPECTS TO YOUR BUSINESS

Hubspot surveyed 3339 marketing professionals in 128 countries about the current state of inbound marketing.
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ARE YOU TRYING TO KEEP UP WITH THE MARKETING JONESES?

ARE YOU TRYING TO KEEP UP WITH THE MARKETING JONESES?

Focus Your Marketing Activities so they Don’t Overwhelm You

I see it all the time when I talk to small business owners. When I ask them about how they are marketing their businesses, their eyes roll and they act as if I blasphemed or something. Marketing seems to be the last things want to talk, think or do when it comes to their business.

Continue reading “ARE YOU TRYING TO KEEP UP WITH THE MARKETING JONESES?”

9 TIPS TO HELP YOU INCREASE YOUR REPEAT BUSINESS

9 TIPS TO HELP YOU INCREASE YOUR REPEAT BUSINESS

Its Cheaper to Keep em…Tips on Getting Repeat Business

It takes a lot of time to find new prospects and turn them into customers. It is much more cost-effective to turn existing customers into repeat customers.

Your current customers are already familiar with your work, how you work and the rates that you charge. You have already built a relationship with them and there is a level of trust between you.
Continue reading “9 TIPS TO HELP YOU INCREASE YOUR REPEAT BUSINESS”

CREATING BRAND AWARENESS FOR YOUR SMALL BUSINESS

CREATING BRAND AWARENESS FOR YOUR SMALL BUSINESS

25 Ways to Create Brand Awareness for Your Business

How do you want prospects and clients to remember your company? Do you want them to think of your company as a leader in your industry? Innovative? Cheap? or Customer Focused?

Branding is how you present your company’s image to prospects and clients, every time they encounter your business and how you gain their trust by proving that you are exactly what you say that you are. Branding is the proof that turns prospects and customers into believers, it is creating the message that you want them to remember about your business.

25 Ways to Create Brand Awareness for Your Small BusinessWhat core values do you want prospects to take away with them when they first encounter your business? What do you want customers to tell their friends when they talk about your business? This is where branding comes into play. It is more than your logo or business card; it is how prospects and customers perceive your business.

I work with clients to create marketing plans that focusing on using blogging as the foundation of their internet marketing to grow their business.  When I work with my clients to create a marketing plan, my goal is the help them create a plan that they easily implement, create processes that allow them to efficiently execute the program at a cost that is affordable for them and with ways that they can use their time efficiently. It is not about delving into the latest marketing activity, but choosing activities that work well with their business, personality and time commitment.

Before you can generate leads or close sales you have to let the world know that your company exists and what services or products you have to offer. When you begin the branding process, you want to decide what you want your company core values. Is your company the fastest, easiest, cheapest, innovative, thought leader? For instance, my branding mantra is helping clients use blogging as the foundation for their internet marketing activities to help grow their business.

Once you have decided what your will company stand for, your core competencies, you can then embark on the adventure of letting the world know that you exist. Making sure that you are consistent with your message and your message is clear.

Here are 25 ways that you can use to spread the word about your business and build brand awareness.

  • Press Releases
  • Blogging
  • Articles
  • Publicity Stunts
  • Direct Marketing
  • Internet Marketing
  • Customer Referrals
  • Word of Mouth Marketing
  • Contests
  • Free reports
  • Tips sheets
  • Videos
  • Podcasts
  • eNewsletters
  • White Papers
  • Case Studies
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Email Signatures
  • Promotions
  • Tagline
  • Facebook Fan Pages
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • EBooks
  • Slideshare

This is just a tip of the iceberg when coming up with ways to get the word out about your business. The goal is to be creative, yet choose marketing activities that work well for your business and not because other people are doing it. Just because twitter is popular, if you don’t have time to constantly send twitter updates, then don’t get involved with twitter. Choose the activities that you enjoy doing and are willing to do for the long-term. Have a goal, create a plan, work the plan and measure your outcome.

Creating brand awareness is about spreading the word about your business in as many ways possible to people in your target market. Yes it takes time and work, but it is well worth the effort.

Your Turn:

How are you creating brand awareness for your business?

 

KEEP YOUR CUSTOMERS COMING BACK WITH A CUSTOMER LOYALTY PROGRAM

KEEP YOUR CUSTOMERS COMING BACK WITH A CUSTOMER LOYALTY PROGRAM

5 Easy Ideas for Creating a Loyalty Program for Customers

In today’s economic climate has small business owners are stretched thin trying to find new customers and retain current customers at the same time. Customer service has become a full-time job for most small business owners. How do I reach new customers? What social media tactics should I be using in my business? How do I keep my current customers from going somewhere else? How do I get my current customers to refer my business to others?

We all have customer loyalty or reward cards in our wallets, whether is it CVS, Best Buy or some other retailer, but how can a service provider, solopreneur or small business create a customer loyalty program?

  • Use your email provider: Instead of having customer sign up for monthly newsletter, have prospects sign up for a customer loyalty program though your email provider.

Send out email offering free reports, webinars, podcasts, articles, discounts and other promotions available only to subscribers.

  • Use a Membership Widget on Your Blog or Website: Add a membership area to your blog where only members will have access to premium content.

Add special webinars, teleseminars, ecourses, seminar events, discounts, articles, eBooks, and other promotional items.

  • Facebook Fan Pages: Create a Facebook fan page for your company and offer members content that is not available on your blog or website.

You can offer events to attend, videos, articles, promotions, discounts, information on seminars, ecourses, webinars, podcasts and much more.

  • Points Program: Create a program for customers where they are rewarded points for each purchase or referral, think frequent flier programs. Create a catalog where they can redeem the points for valued gifts.

You can offer free webinars, workbooks, books, teleseminars, consultations, promotional items, tickets, magazine subscriptions, whatever you can think of that will be of value to your current customers.

  • Blog Commenter’s: Use blog commenting software that gives points to readers when they leave comments. Let the reader’s know at the end of each posts that you will be sending a free gift to the commenter with the most comments each week, month or whatever deadline you choose, just don’t make it to infrequent.

You can give away free reports, eBooks, consultations, white papers or whatever item that related to your business that can be delivered electronically. Don’t forget to announce the winner.

How can Businesses put Customer Loyalty Programs to Work for Their Businesses?

Let’s look at a few ways that professional businesses can use loyalty programs:

Professional Coaches: You run a professional coaching business and decide to set up a free customer loyalty program. You begin by creating a landing page explaining the loyalty program to prospects and a sign-up form. You tell them all the benefits of signing up for the loyalty program which could include such benefits as free coaching sessions, discounted coaching sessions, free eBooks and workbooks, free worksheets, articles, webinars, and discounts on books, eBooks, and special reports. You send members an email monthly with links to the specials that you are offering and not available to general readers of your blog or visitors to your website.

Financial Planners: You decide to set up a membership site on your website or blog. Prospects sign up to become members to receive special member benefits. You offer members access to site by logging into the restricted area for members only where they read industry reports, company research, worksheets, educational information and forums. You then notify members though email that new products are available at the membership site.

Author: You decide to set up a Facebook fan page for your books. You are about to release a new book and you want to promote your book and get others to promote you book. You can add sample chapters, podcasts of you reading from your books, post book signing events, hold a contest to win a free book, and hold a contest to people to name characters in your next new book. The possibilities are endless, you could create an online novel where once a week you add a new chapter or create a novel where you begin the novel and have people submit the next chapter every month. You could post the winner’s chapter or you could also have members vote on the chapter that they like the most and post the chapter with the post votes as the winning chapter and ask members to post the next chapter.

Retail Store: You own a small online and offline women’s boutique and you want to increase your customer’s loyalty and get them to spend more often. You decide to set up a customer reward card and customers can swipe the card in the store or enter their customer number when they purchase online. You can reward customer by offering customer only sales, discount coupons, free shipping, in-store events and promotional items, the possibilities are almost endless.

Why set up a Loyalty Program?

Loyalty programs allow you stay top of mind with clients. By offering rewards that are of high value to customers you will give them incentive to due business with you and not your competitors. Don’t forget to offer referral rewards to encourage customers to refer others to your business.

Loyalty programs offer your business these benefits:

  • Targeting: Loyalty programs offer businesses the opportunity to target people are willing to become active participants in your marketing programs and helps moves the prospects through the sales funnel into becoming clients.
  • Engagement: Loyalty programs allow businesses to engage members and learn what they are interested in learning and buying. Engagement allows business owners to target prospects with offers that will appeal to them because they have creating an ongoing community involvement with the prospect. Engagement helps the build trust and loyalty among members.
  • Conversion: Loyalty programs that build trust and loyalty among members leads to increased sales conversion among members. The members already know and trust your products and are more willing to purchase your products.

All you have to do now is decide on what type of loyalty program you want to create. What you want to accomplish and how you will implement the loyalty program.

Your Turn:

Do you currently have a loyalty program for your business?

DEAR BLOG AND READERS: I KNOW IT’S BEEN A LONG TIME, SORRY TO HAVE LEFT YOU

DEAR BLOG AND READERS: I KNOW IT’S BEEN A LONG TIME, SORRY TO HAVE LEFT YOU

I missed my blog, but I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t write another post. I couldn’t take on another client. I felt dead in the water.

It felt like I was losing my mind. My mind was in a fog, like I was wandering around lost in the wilderness. Bewildered. Stressed.

One of my goals in life is to live as stress free as possible and I was failing.

The stress was getting to me.

I was becoming hard to live with. Hell I didn’t even want to live with me.

I couldn’t sleep, my head hurt, my patience was short. I was feeling completely overwhelmed and  bordering depression.

Oh the long nights of getting no sleep, listening to NPR, dreading the next day.

When the next day arrived, I didn’t want to get out of bed.

What a horrible way to live.

I felt like screaming.

So stressed out I could scream…too much marketing

Why?

Marketing.

Plan and simple, it was marketing. I was giving to much of myself to my clients and couldn’t get marketing off my mind.

I had taken on too much and it was beginning to drive me crazy. The more my clients asked for, the more I did, seemingly unable to say no.

It’s true. I was on the verge of losing my mind.

What was I going to do?

One thing for sure, I had to take a break, before I crashed and burned.

So I said to myself. Self, what do you want to do now.

I have been marketing for the last 15 years as a profession. So, I decided maybe it’s time for me to look for a job doing something else. I began looking around on the Internet for available jobs and I begin applying to jobs that sounded interesting but were not in the marketing field.

What I found out is that corporate America is even more demanding now that it was when I first left. They actually have nerves to want more education more experienced and pay even less money than when I was being paid when I left corporate America many years ago. The demands on employees is ridiculous, companies offer less benefits, less pay while asking employees to work more hours. There were jobs for administrative assistants that wanted a bachelor’s degree. If I have spent all that time and money to get a degree, I do not want to be an administrative assistant; I want to be an administrator. Maybe it’s just employers taking advantage of a tight economy. That’s my guess and it’s a damn shame.

This was out of the question for me.

I decided I needed to rethink my business and the services that I offer to my clients. I needed to keep from getting burned out and spreading myself to thin.

What do I really love?

I love blogging.

I’ve decided that I will focus on working with clients who want to blog and utilize blogging as the foundation for the online marketing.

I must not allow myself to be pulled into areas that I do not enjoy.

I must remain focused on the services that I am offering my clients and not be afraid to say know what they want services that do not offer. While this can be scary, saying no clients it something that I must do to be able to provide excellent services to my clients and not become stressed out by providing services to my clients that I do not enjoy.

I’ve decided to focus on just blogging services and not all blogging services.

I will concentrate on offering only two services to clients who are already blogging.

1. Blog audit: The client will determine what their goal if for their blog and I will provide a blog audit telling them how well they are doing and suggest what changes to make to reach their goals.

2. Blog Audit and Plan: After I have accessed the client’s blog, I will then provide the client with a plan to help them reach their goal.

That’s it!

I will not help you set up a blog or write blog posts for you. I will help you to access your blog, decide on the goal for your blog, determine if your blog is meeting your needs, figure out what changes are needed and offer suggestions  to help you improve your blog.

I will also help you create a plan that will help you reach the goal that you have for your blog. If you want to reach a goal within a specific period, I will help you create a plan to reach that goal. I will also help you to track you progress, that’s it.

I will not be writing blog posts, EBooks, articles, emails, blog set-up or anything else. If the client is in need of these services, I will help them find suitable candidates to provide these services.

While I am capable of providing many of the services that a client needs, I believe that it will best serve me and my clients if I remained focused on one area: blogging.

I have chosen blogging, because I believe in blogging and the benefits that it can bring a business. I also believe that a blog is the hub to successful online and social media marketing program.

According to Hubspot research 57% of businesses who blog, gain new business. I can attest to this, because my business brings in 85-90% of its business from my blog.

So that’s the skinny of it.

My goal is to help my clients become better more efficient bloggers and to utilize their blogs to help them meet their business goals.

My goal is to start at the beginning. I will try to help my readers build a better blog. I will try some new things on my blog and tell you how they go. I will offer from time to time my blog as an experiment and let you know what I am trying and how things work out. I will put to test ideas that others have and let you know how things go and put to test some ideas that you offer.

My approach will be casual, because I am a casual type of person. Through reading my blog, I hope that you will get to know me and I will in turn get to know you.

I hope is that along the way we will all learn a lot and build great business blogs.

What do you think? I would love to hear your thoughts.

 

Jenn