Tag Archives: business marketing

Small Business Marketing Strategies 11 – See What You Want & Get What You See

If your goal in life to be happy & successful, then there is a fair chance that you have a mental picture in your mind about what exactly Happy and Successful are? No. I though not – And that’s where so many people struggle.

For most people, they want financial security, health, happy family etc but they have not defined what each of these things mean for them.

In your business you will be on the receiving end of many small business marketing tips. One of the most powerful, long term tips that you can exercise is to follow a process called IVVM. IVVM stands for Idealization, Visualization, Verbalization and Materialization.

Even in a tough economy where everyone is suffering from myopia, it is important for every business owner, be they offline or online or working in a huge corporation or working from their garage to dram, visualize and make things happen. The seeds of recovery will be sown amongst the business owners and they will accelerate any recovery.

I met a client a few years ago in March 2004. I asked her what she would like to be doing in an ideal world. She wanted a sea front apartment on the Mediterranean. She wanted to be able to live and work there for at least 6months per year. She had a crystal clear picture of the apartment and the life she wanted to lead.

As I worked with her over the next 5 years, I saw this dream materialise. She never lost focus and worked tirelessly to make it a reality.

Clarity of though leads to materialization much faster. In The Success Principles by Jack Canfield, he outlines the process and the simplicity of the process.

Very few people perform this exercise and it’s a shame. You need to start this exercise right now, this minute, especially if you want to achieve success in your business.

Back again to the business that we work with. The ones that have clear goals documented, supported by images and pictures of their ideal life start to make things happen each and every day.

Are you ready to take the step toward discipline in your life?

Are you ready to fulfill your desires though discipline and focus?

What would hold you back from the process of mapping out your goals and making them a reality?

Starting a Carpet Cleaning Business – Marketing and Advertising

Starting a carpet cleaning business can seem simple to many individuals, but as with any business venture for the entrepreneur marketing and advertising can be a make or break. Here are a few helpful tips for marketing and advertising your new carpet cleaning business.

Marketing and advertising is one of the most critical parts of a successful carpet cleaning business. To begin with advertising and marketing can be done through some of the old stand-bys such as a classified ads paper. The classified ads paper is the popular little magazine that many grab on their way out of any large grocery store to the small mom and pops convenience stores. A simple ad placement here can cost as little as $7 to $14 dollars a week and be a solid start to getting noticed by all those individuals looking for products and services on a budget.

The Yellow Book of course is an old friend for many entrepreneurs out there. The cost will usually be more than the cost of the classified ads, but this medium has been around and still used, although not as often today, but it is still a good way to be found quickly. Having a large ad as you will see later in this article, will actually not be as effective as most would like, but simply having your name in the Yellow Book should be a must on your list of places for marketing.

The newspaper has always been the place to be for many, many decades. Today however, those who used to fight for the T.V. guide space no longer find this as appealing as it once was due to technology and the power of cable. Today it might be better to be towards the opinion pages, sports pages and even in the local community section of the paper itself. Although all these mediums are great stand-bys, there has never been anything as cost effective and powerful as what comes next.

The Internet, when it comes to marketing and advertising for the carpet cleaning business this medium has been passed up for the most part. Some looking to the Internet believe that it is an expensive and confusing land of the lost, but this is not so. This medium for marketing and advertising is the most powerful and cost effective of any medium ever invented. There is no need for spending thousands for serious and deeply involved websites for the carpet cleaner this can be done with a simple blog hosted for less than $10 dollar a month. Learning how to use this medium only comes with a small investment and tax-write-off for a simple education in Internet marketing. The yellow book, newspaper and classified ads are giving way to Dex online, Craiglist and a simple blog with solid marketing pointing the way.

Online Business Marketing Solutions – Getting Your Website Listed In Search Engines

If you have an online business of your own and you wish to be able to generate a constant amount of high quality website visitors to your site that will provide you with a high conversion rate, then one of the best marketing and advertising methods for you is simply to get your website appearing highly in the major search engines. Even though your search engine results will not be immediate like can be seen through the use of other marketing solutions, search engine marketing lasts for a much longer time and provides highly targeted visitors to you consistently.

Getting your website listed in the search engines online gives you the potential to receive significantly better results than through mostly any other marketing solutions that are available. Your listings in the search engines will not just provide you with targeted traffic though, but it will also increase the value of your domain! The results you can receive by reaching even the first page of a major search engines can provide you with much better results than you usually see through other marketing solutions such as by submitting press releases, newspaper ads, banner ads, email campaigns, even newsletter marketing.

There are numerous places available online that allow you to submit your website to search engines. What many people do not know though is that these submission systems do not have to be used in order for your website to appear in search engine results. That’s right!…Don’t be too shocked now…With social networking and other marketing solutions available to you, it is getting easier to get listed in the major search engines. What do I mean by this? Well, if you utilize marketing solutions such as social networking or article marketing you can get your website associated with some other highly popular websites and by doing so your website will actually get indexed into the search engines when the search engine indexes the highly popular sites and follow your link when they do it! Doing this, you not only generate highly targeted website visitors through the search engines, but also directly from the social network marketing sites too, and it doesn’t even have to cost you anything to perform social network marketing! Do you now see the potential for you to see drastic increases of traffic if you choose to utilize social network marketing or article marketing to help your website get listed in and climb the search engine rankings?

Because of this relatively easy search engine submission you should be aware of such businesses that promise automatic submission of your website or websites for a hefty fee because you can just be wasting your hard earned money.

If social network marketing, article marketing, and other methods of getting your site associated with highly popular websites is not for you though then you can easily manually submit your website to the search engines. However, without optimizing your website and getting appropriate links heading to your website from other sites you will not usually be able to get very good rankings and thus, not very good traffic as a result.

Before you attempt to perform your chosen marketing solutions for your website so you can start generating highly targeted website visitors you absolutely must ensure that your website is complete and in a state that you yourself would appreciate if you were searching the Internet and visited the site. You will want to ensure that it is designed well, is keyword rich, and has appealing graphics and pictures that appear smoothly within your relevant content.

I touched on this very lightly earlier but the search engine optimization of your website will help it climb through the rankings to get to the top of the results. I am not covering it specifically in this article but it is definitely something you will want to find out about because of its importance. My eCourse that you can learn about at the end of this article actually includes an entire section on search engine optimization if you are interested in learning about it.

One very important thing to remember regarding your website marketing solutions is to include a sitemap of your site because it will make it easy for the search engine crawlers to be able to index your website and all associated pages within it. Your sitemap can direct the search engine robots around your site and can let it know which folders it should and should not index. This is a way to prevent specific folders that you don’t want public from appearing in search engine results while at the same time allowing ones that you do want to be seen by the general public. Without using a sitemap nowadays you are pretty much blowing all potential you have to achieve consistently high results in the search engines to help you get those highly targeted website visitors that you need so I highly recommend you add one to your website.

If you enjoyed this article and are interested in website marketing and/or small business marketing then you will love my new free report that will show you The Exact Business Marketing And Website Marketing Strategies That Will Allow Your Business To Achieve True Long Term Success. You will also be able to learn about his marketing eCourse that will help you market your website or business more effectively.

Grab your copy by following the link below:

http://www.AnalyzedMarketing.com/newreport.html

What Is Video Marketing?: Video Business Marketing Solutions

What is video marketing? Video business is simply one of the fastest growing segments of the market. If you are looking for marketing solutions that work, then video marketing is the answer.

If you look at YouTube, there are some jaw-dropping stats. There are over 800 million unique visitors each month and over 4 billion hours of video are watched each month according to YouTube’s own stats.

So is it too late to learn how to market a business using video marketing? Absolutely not! Of course the rules have changed and what you do today is entirely different then when YouTube first came on the market in 2005.

Don’t expect viral marketing to be the answer either. Too many people think they have a video that will go viral, but that rarely ever happens.

So what makes an effective video for marketing? It can be broken down into three parts. People search YouTube for answers to their questions and video just happens to be the fastest growing segment of marketing.

If you can’t address someone’s concerns immediately, they will move on until they find a video that will answer their question.

The second part is all about how you provide information to your viewer. If you aren’t addressing their problem, they will find another reason to move on.

And the third part consists of asking the viewer to take some kind of action. Perhaps you have something of value that they can use to solve their problem.

People have busy lives and if they can find their answer in a short amount of time, they will respond to your message. If your goal is to just blatantly sell something, you will lose more often than you will win.

Video marketing is an opportunity to connect with your audience. They get to hear your voice and if you’re on camera, they get see the real you.

And don’t forget, many of the same principles you used elsewhere apply here too. For example, video SEO (search engine optimization) is crucial when marketing with video.

YouTube and Google marketing go hand in hand. The more information you provide them, the easier it is for them to rank your videos.

Initially the question was asked, “What is video marketing”? It’s a simple and very effective way to get to know your audience and provide them with answers to their problems. And when done effectively, it provides cost-effective marketing solutions for your business as well.

Social Media Marketing Firms – How They Can Make Your Business A Success

Social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn among others have literally transformed from simple social network sites to major business/product/service marketing platforms. This is simply because of the large number of users accessing the sites on a daily basis. Like with any other marketing process, social marketing is a process that businesses/marketers employ to attract attention or gain traffic to their traditional business websites.

A common feature of social marketing is creation of relevant content that not only attracts but also encourages social networking users to share the same with their social networks. As users share content, a business/marketer gains what is referred to as “earned media” instead of “paid media”. Transformation of social networking sites to business marketing platforms has made it possible for a good number of firms to specialize in social media marketing, offering their services to millions of small, medium-sized and large businesses across the world.

There are several ways through which social media marketing firms can make your business a success story.

Business Reputation

Just in the same way that you strive to gain good reputation among your local clients, it is also very important that you have the same with social networking users. This makes it necessary to know what the users say about your business/product. A dedicated social media marketing firm will normally have what is referred to as Client Centre, a nerve centre that gives you information regarding what is said about your business/product on social media sites. A firm will normally gives you access to the centre with valuable reputation management tools for your own use.

Monitoring/Reports

Monitoring the performance of your marketing campaigns on social media sites can be a big challenge considering the fact that you need to focus on your business. Monitoring and reporting is one of the most important services that a social media marketing firm will provide you. A dedicated firm will continuously monitor the performance of your marketing campaign and report to you what is good about it and in case of poor performance, advise you on what needs to be done to improve the campaign.

Customized Marketing Campaign

Engaging the service of a social media marketing firm can be of great benefit when it comes to directing your campaign to a specific population in a geographic area. Although you may manage to gain a huge following on social media sites out of your own efforts, driving them to your traditional business website can be very difficult. A social media marketing firm will go the extra mile to keep your followers engaged through updated and encouraging content to attract them to your website.

Regardless of how small your business may be, having a presence on social networking sites is something you cannot ignore when you need to expand your business. However, engaging a social media marketing firm for the purpose of marketing your business on social networking platforms requires that you research carefully to identify a reputable firm that will take your business to the next level.

Choosing Small Business Web Marketing Strategies

My small business Web marketing strategies is to keep it simple.

Simple to me is:

  • focused,
  • scalable,
  • systematic and teachable,
  • can be leveraged, and
  • is easily measurable.

Of course, it must be effective as well.

When diving into Web marketing for your small business, it’s a good idea to explore your options, but then you need to pick and choose. Unless you have millions of dollars and a huge team, you can’t possibly execute all the Web marketing strategies effectively.

Elements of a Great Small Business Web Marketing Strategy

Simple business marketing strategies to me are those that are focused, scalable, systemic, and can be leveraged.

1. Be Focused with your Business Web Marketing Strategies

Getting focused in critical. “Pick and stick” to a few core Web marketing activities. Excel at those activities and do them consistently.

Consistency is a natural consequence of being focused. Don’t try and do it all in 2 weeks. Instead, once you’ve chosen your core Web marketing strategies, develop an action plan and follow through.

For example. If you decide on focusing on article and video marketing, then develop a publishing timeline. Resolve to publish a certain number of articles and videos each month. Take action consistently. Also set a realistic timeline. In the beginning you may revise your timeline.

Think in terms years, not weeks. If you publish 2 articles and 2 videos each month, in 2 years you’ll have nearly 100 published articles and videos. Even if each article and video drives 1 visitor to your website each week, that’s 200 visitors per week.

Moreover, you’ll establish a huge bank of articles and videos which in itself will build credibility. A few articles and a few videos won’t have the same impact as hundreds of articles and videos.

I publish articles primarily in EzineArticles and videos in YouTube because those publishing platforms receive the most views and delivers the most traffic.

2. Choose Marketing Strategies that are Scalable

Scalable, in the sense I’m referring to it, is being able to start small with no or a limited budget, and build on your success. As you increase revenues, you can “scale it up” by investing growing profits into your chosen marketing activities.

The reality for many small businesses, especially when starting out, is there are not a lot of resources for marketing. Being able to start with little or no investment is important.

3. Systematic and Teachable

I’m a DIY, hands-on marketer for my business. When you know your core marketing activities well, then you’re in a much better position to hire it out because you know how it should be performed. You also know how to measure results.

Simple means you turn your Web marketing strategy into a system. You have a plan and you execute consistently. You don’t have to re-invent the wheel. Instead, you wash, rinse, and repeat… once you establish and effective system.

Continue doing your core activities over and over. Keep in mind that it may take a little while to develop an effective Web marketing system. Once you do, then you can then easily hire it out or have train someone in your organization to do it.

Example: returning to the article and video marketing example, you’ll not only have a publishing timeline, but you’ll develop article writing techniques and video templates you can use over and over. In time, you’ll write articles and create videos faster.

4. Leveraging Your Marketing Activities

Leveraging your marketing activities is building upon past work. Leveraging Web marketing activities enables you to exponentially build up your Web presence.

You can best leverage when you choose marketing activities that complement one another.

The best way to explain this is by example. Returning to the article and video marketing example, you can leverage those two complementary activities. Your article content can be your video content.

Leveraging also results naturally as you build up a Web presence. As you publish more quality articles, you have more content readily available for your readers. Same thing with videos. Once they read your articles and watch your videos, your other work is there for people (i.e. prospective customers) to read and watch.

More content also builds credibility… as long as it’s quality content.

5. Easily Measurable

Choose small business Web marketing strategies that present ways for you to measure results. If you don’t know what’s working, then you won’t know what to do. You want to focus on effective activities only.

The first part of being measurable is determining the results you seek.

  • Is it the number of visitors to your website?
  • How about the number of article or video views?
  • Is it the number of new customers?

Likely it’s all of these. Ultimately it’s the number of new customers and revenues. However, measuring a variety of figures/data is important.

Do some research to find out what are good numbers and what are bad numbers. You need to set the goal posts.

However, don’t prematurely stop a marketing strategy or activity because you aren’t getting huge results right away. Web marketing takes time. You’ll have to tweak and test your activities and system.

Which leads to the second part of being measurable – testing and tweaking. Analyze what’s working and then tweak weak areas. This is an ongoing process.

For example, some types of articles receive more views and click-thrus than others. In your market, you’ll have to try different article approaches to see what works the best for your business.

Four Steps to an Effective Small Business Marketing Strategy

You know you have a great product or service. You have the best sales personal to help your customers make an educated buying decision. You have the best customer support set up to help your customers with any questions they have after the sale, but what are you doing to market your product or service. Nothing really happens in your business to make money before you set up and implement your small business marketing strategy.

Small Business Marketing Tip Number one

The first part of your marketing strategy should be to know your customer. Take time to think about why someone would want your product or service. You need to know what motivates your potential customers so that you can position your product or service correctly.

Small Business Marketing Tip Number Two

The second part to your small business marketing strategy is to stay consistent in your message and communication. You’re current customers and repeat customers are the most valuable customers that you have. They have already done business with you and you have had the chance to develop a relationship with them. Make sure to stay in contact with them and let them know you appreciate their business and also let them know when you have specials or new products they may like. Some tools you could use in your small business marketing strategy to stay in contact are email, text messaging, mailers, social networking messages and posts, updates on a blog or your website and so many more. Make sure you are gathering contact information from your customers and make them feel important because they are.

Small Business Marketing Tip Number Three

The third part of your business marketing strategy should be to use the media as much as possible and make some noise about your product or service. Get your business covered in as many news, radio, Internet publications as you can to establish yourself as an expert or an authority. News stations and local print media are constantly looking for good stories to be part of and talk about. Make sure that you present your business to them with the audience in mind on not necessarily to promote your business. The sneaky part of your small business marketing strategy is to let them get the word out by delivering a real cool story they can report on.

Small Business Marketing Tip Number Four

The fourth part of your marketing strategy is to make sure that your customers can find you. In the fast paced work we live in today people are using technology more and more to make their buying decisions. This includes the whole buying cycle from research to purchase for products and searching on mobile devises for local businesses. Statistically one-third of mobile searches are with local intent meaning people want to purchase now. This means that if your business does not show up their mobile device either through search or local listings, they are probably going to do business with your competition.

Your marketing strategy should be all about developing a relationship with your customer’s, this is starts with your message and should continue long after the sale. With all of the options technology offers getting news customers and staying in contact with them has become very cost-effective, so make sure to plan out your small business marketing strategy.

Lawn Care Business Marketing – 3 Ways to Fight Customer Attrition

One of the BIGGEST challenges of growing any successful lawn care business is making sure your customers stay with you month after month and hopefully year after year.  It can be especially difficult in situations like what our current economy is presenting because people are really watching their expenses and the competition is extremely stiff, with many of your competitors willing to cut their prices down to basically nothing.

In spite of all these challenges you’ll face, it’s critically important to recognize that your most valuable asset is still your existing customer. Because it’s at least 5-10 times more expensive to land a brand new customer, you really should do everything within your power to keep those customers you already have.

If you can keep your customers longer than your competition, you’ll position yourself to sell more services, increase your transaction amount because of the increased trust, and ultimately be able to grow your lawn care or landscaping business much faster.

Here are a few quick ideas to help you fight customer attrition and hold onto them for longer:

  • Communicate with them consistently. And sending them a monthly invoice DOES NOT count. If you’ll reach out to them a couple of times a month, either via email, hard copy newsletter, or a phone call you’ll quickly develop a reputation as a business that cares which will really help you when the ‘low-price, low-service’ guy knocks on their door.
  • Send them holiday, anniversary, or birthday cards. In addition to communicating with them on a monthly basis, you should also reach out to them on special occasions. Nothing tells people you’re genuinely interested in them more than a timely greeting card on their birthday or anniversary. And because holiday cards are usually saved for friends and family, by sending them one you’re letting them know you’re much more than just a service provider.
  • Reward them for their loyalty. If you have customers that have been with you for a long time, let them know you appreciate their loyalty by sending them inexpensive, but heartfelt gifts. While you might be tempted to give them a free service, I’ve always believed that when you send something outside of what they normally get from you it will be more memorable and have a greater impact.

Ultimately, the thing to remember is that your customers don’t owe you a thing. Just because they’ve done business with you in the past doesn’t mean they’ll continue to do so.

By making sure you communicate consistently with your customers you let them know you truly do value the relationship and they really do matter to your business.  Follow these 3 simple suggestions and watch you customer retention rates climb and your competitors scramble to find another lawn care business to steal customers from!

No Marketing ROI in Your Small Business? Here’s How to Fix It

If you are a small business owner, you know how hard it’s to manage all aspects of your business. Marketing is the backbone of any business as far as growth is concerned. Unlike large companies, small startups have to work with smaller budgets. As a result, the owners have to try their best to get the maximum return on their marketing investment. In this guide, we are going to give you a few secret tips that may help you get the highest ROI.

1) Make sure you have Realistic Goals

Having solid goals is the first thing you need to do. This is important if you want your marketing plan to be effective. You can have different goals and ways to achieve them. For example, you can find a way to spur on your customers or clients to sign up for your weekly or monthly newsletter.

In the same way, for better revenue growth, make sure you have an eye-catching call-to-action in your newsletters. This will increase the click-through rate.

2) Choose a Suitable Channel

Not every marketing channel can work for you. So, you need to choose a channel based on real data. This channel can be a platform that can help you exchange information with your customers, such as social media.

Of course, you may have to spend the time to get familiar with these channels. As soon as you have learned to use them, you are good to go.

3) Run Optimized Marketing Campaigns

This is one of the best cross-platform technique. With this approach in place, you can make your message more effective whether you are using ads on newspapers, TV or the Internet.

It’s good to have an integrated marketing campaign as it may have a positive impact on the visibility and efficacy of your message. In fact, experts say that 70% customers lean toward the integrated marketing method. So, an optimized campaign can give better results.

4) Write Content

Marketing can be done in more ways than one, and content marketing is on top of the list. Writing content for your blog or website can help you get a number of benefits down the road. The fact of the matter is that content is king as far as getting your site listed on the first page of Google is concerned. Once your site is listed on top of the search results page, your ROI will go up.

5) Use task Automation Platforms

With the help of digital marketing, you can reap many benefits. Digital marketing has a lot of tools and platforms that allow you to do the automation of your marketing tasks. Some of the platforms are MailChimp, Facebook, and WordPress. The automation of tasks can save you a lot of time and investment dollars. At the same time, it will boost your marketing ROI.

Conclusion

If implemented the right way, these secret techniques can help you increase your marketing ROI significantly. So, make sure you give them a go if you are a serious small business owner. Hope this helps.

Local Business Marketing – The Five Drivers of Online Business Marketing

Did you invest the first ten years or more of your professional life learning about reliable, old school marketing? Prior to ten years ago, it was about local radio, local (cable) television, newspaper, networking functions, trade shows and occasionally an insert or direct mail piece. Life was easy.

And then along came the internet, and everything went to the dogs. (Actually, some say it went to the cats, but that’s only social media.) Now, in this new digital age, it seems that so many of the lessons we learned simply don’t apply any more.

Or do they?

Online business marketing is still the same as what you’ve learned, only the tools have new names, and the ability to use those tools has been upgraded drastically. In fact, what used to take weeks or months to find out now only takes seconds.

One of the biggest changes to occur has been in the field of Test Marketing. Remember when you had to pay for “focus groups” to stand in the mall or the grocery store and ask people who appeared to be your target market a bunch of questions about what they preferred to see/hear/watch? Of course you WANTED to do market testing, because otherwise you could easily waste thousands, even tens of thousands of dollars, on marketing programs that had no appeal (or worse, had negative appeal) to your target clientele.

Now, in the new digital world, all that expense is behind you, and you don’t have to wait to take your new products straight to the marketplace. When you are thinking about the daunting task of moving your business marketing to the online arena, you will need to keep the Five Drivers of Online Business Marketing in mind. Whichever ad works best for you becomes your new ad for your campaign. The big difference is that your ad(s) have been out there WORKING for you the entire time they’ve been tested. You’re making money from your efforts right from the beginning.

And if you’re worried about people finding your ads somehow mysteriously offensive, it’s not a problem. In this day and age of instant feedback (via social media, email and texting) you will know within minutes if your ads have hit a sour note. Kill them before the third complaint arrives. It’s that easy.

When you are thinking about the daunting task of moving your business marketing to the online arena, you will need to keep the Five Drivers of Online Business Marketing in mind:

1. SEO (Search Engine Optimization): Being found is all about being honest. A lot.

2. Site Design: It needs to reflect your business and your goals for the site.

3. Social Media: Think of it as a combination of the golf course and a tradeshow floor.

4. Email: It’s direct mail with a brain, reporting back everything that happens.

5. Multi-Media: Google favors those who show AND tell.

This may seem like a lot, but with just a few hours of work per week, you can move your business marketing efforts online and see a substantial improvement in your customer attraction, relations and conversions.