When I ask someone about their target audience or client the first reaction is usually a blank stare. Or they might answer "anyone 18-80!" in an enthusiastic bright tone.
Unfortunately trying to market to "anyone 18-80" is nearly impossible. You really have to understand the true sweet spot within your client base, particularly if you're starting on a content marketing campaign. What I've found is that with a little digging, most business owners really do know their client base pretty well. But they don't want to miss anyone who actually might buy something so they say "everyone". This is faulty logic because we can't market effectively to "everyone."
Here are five way to help you identify your own client "sweet spot" without leaving anyone out:
Getting your business out there to the right people isn't easy. In this day and age, more people look to the internet to find local businesses than they do anywhere else. Gone are the days when just a simple ad in the phone book could...
While the terms brand and logo are often used interchangeably, your logo is just a small part of your overall brand. Your brand is anything that represents your company and your logo is the single image that customers identify you by. If you take time to design an effective logo your customers can identify your company in minutes just by seeing the image. Some great examples of effective logo designs are McDonald's golden arches, Nike's Swoosh and Amazon's smiley face.
While you cannot expect your logo to imprint your brand in just a few days, the design you choose could be sending the wrong messages to the right customers. Here are five of the worst messages your logo could be sending your customers:
Whether you're a rookie greenhorn or an experienced pro at running a business, chances are you'll agree that marketing a business can be a very difficult thing to do. That's why, as a business owner, you should be on the look out for all the help you can get. As you probably know, there are hundreds of thousands of apps on iTunes and many of these can help you market your business. For the iPhone or iPod Touch owners out there, here are the top five iPhone apps that can help you market your business.
LocalVox - This marketing application allows you to create an online presence for your business. With this app on your iPhone or iPod Touch, you can publish events, news, and deals in order to inform the public. These announcements will make their way to a variety of online channels, such as e-mail newsletters, websites, social media websites, and local directories. While LocalVox delivers your announcements to all these online channels, it also utilizes Google Place listings and organic search, boosting your websites ranking. Best of all, you can use this app anywhere and at any time.
For those of you marketing to men, you may have passed Pinterest by as a social media tool. But our guest blogger, Dana Rasmussen, has a different take on why real men DO use Pinterest. Enjoy!
[caption id="attachment_5172" align="alignright" width="300"] If I re-pin you, will it take our bromance to a new level? Image courtesy of Juhansonin [/caption]
Why Real Men Don't Use Pinterest… or do they? A look at who uses this popular social media platform and why brands should pay attention.
For many men, Pinterest ranks right up there with women's fashion– they don't like it or understand what's going on – but they're not entirely sure they want to dismiss it altogether. And maybe they shouldn't.
True, many men visit the photo-sharing pinboard-style site, take a look at the wedding gowns, recipes, flowers, and abundance of pink, girly stuff and immediately abort their efforts. But Pinterest isn't just for chicks, and recent evidence shows that both men and men's brands are starting to pay attention.
Pinning before marriage: Bridegrooms getting hip to the trends on Pinterest.
If you run your own company, you may or may not be involved in the marketing duties. In some instances, company owners can afford to reach out and hire a marketing specialist to work onsite with them, while others take the option of having an outside firm that specializes in marketing do the job for them. Whichever way you determine to be best for your business, there are a number of factors that you should focus on, allowing you the best possibility of succeeding with your marketing needs.
Don’t hit the panic button - First and foremost, you will find your business going through peaks and valleys during the course of the year, so never hit the panic button. You may get the urge to scale back your marketing budget when things are not going well, but that is likely the worst time to do that. While you’re toning down your marketing budget, your competition is likely going in the opposite direction. Reevaluate from time to time what’s working and what isn’t working, giving you the guidance necessary to move around money and efforts if need be. Remember, the day you stop marketing could be the prelude to the day you close your business.
According to research from AWeber Communications, close to 70 percent of small businesses said they would be adding to their marketing budgets this year, with some 97 percent planning on doing no less than maintaining their present level directed towards marketing expenses. That being said, some well-known companies noted in the last year that they were scaling back their marketing over the next 12 months, with one even noting in hindsight, such a decision ended up costing his business customers and revenue. Those making headlines included:
I was on the phone with a friend of mine this week who was frustrated because one of her clients was pulling all their money out of one medium, to sink it into another. I wonder when businesses will finally get it that there isn't a silver bullet, single item that will market them to success. What works is the mix...and although it's frustrating to realize that you have to juggle several balls at once these days for marketing to stick, it's what you have to do.
It's really not that hard, and it doesn't take as much time as you think. People often ask me how I can come up with a good blend of marketing channels so quickly. Well, part of it is just experience . But another part is a quick rundown I do when I'm working with, or pitching a client. You can do the same thing if you're educated about your business.
1. First, I find out about the target audience. After they tell me "It's everyone aged 8-80! Everyone loves our product/service/etc" I remind them that reaching this target market would probably require a billion gajillion dollars. So...who buys their product most often? Where do they live? Boil it down into a quick description of a couple of target segments, something like this:
"Moms, aged 28-45, who live in the Minnetonka area, work part-time or stay at home and like crafts. They like Facebook, Pinterest and 50 Shades of Grey (or is it Gray?)"
Your biggest marketing resolution for 2013 shouldn't have anything to do with sales, or social media or content marketing. Your biggest marketing resolution for 2013 should be stellar customer service. As a marketer, I see my efforts destroyed time and time again by poor customer service. It takes a lot of money to get a new customer, but not a lot to keep them. Yet I'm constantly fighting the fact that the bridge between marketing and customer service is either shaky, or non-existent.
As a marketer, here are several ways to make sure that customer service and marketing are working together well.