In Sickness And In Health
I recently drove by a business that had a sign out front that read "Closed due to illness".
Marketing on a Budget
A successful marketing plan doesn't have to include an athletic superstar, prime-time placement, state-of-the-art computer graphics or a massive budget. Being resourceful and smart can be just as effective.
Business promotion doesn't have to cost a fortune. Often, it's the personal touch that seals the deal. Here are ideas gathered from marketing experts to help you make the most of a slim marketing budget:
10 Powerful Marketing Tips
1. Print your best small ad on a postcard and mail it to prospects in your targeted market. People read postcards when the message is brief. A small ad on a postcard can drive a high volume of traffic to your web site and generate a flood of sales leads for a very small cost.2. No single marketing effort works all the time for every business, so rotate several marketing tactics and vary your approach. Your customers tune out after awhile if you toot only one note. Not only that, YOU get bored. Marketing can be fun, so take advantage of the thousands of opportunities available for communicating your value to customers. But don't be arbitrary about your selection of a variety of marketing ploys. Plan carefully. Get feedback from customers and adapt your efforts accordingly.3. Use buddy marketing to promote your business. For example, if you send out brochures, you could include a leaflet and/or business card of another business, which had agreed to do the same for you. This gives you the chance to reach a whole new pool of potential customers.4. Answer Your Phone Differently. Try announcing a special offer when you answer the phone. For example you could say, "Good morning, this is Ann Marie with Check It Out; ask me about my special marketing offer." The caller is compelled to ask about the offer. Sure, many companies have recorded messages that play when you're tied up in a queue, but who do you know that has a live message? I certainly haven't heard of anyone. Make sure your offer is aggressive and increase your caller's urgency by including a not-so-distant expiration date.5. Stick It! Use stickers, stamps and handwritten notes on all of your direct mail efforts and day-to-day business mail. Remember, when you put a sticker or handwritten message on the outside of an envelope, it has the impact of a miniature billboard. People read it first; however, the message should be short and concise so it can be read in less than 10 seconds.6. Send A Second Offer To Your Customers Immediately After They've Purchased Your customer just purchased a sweater from your clothing shop. Send a handwritten note to your customer thanking them for their business and informing them that upon their return with "this note" they may take advantage of a private offer, such as 20% off their next purchase. To create urgency, remember to include an expiration date.7. Newsletters. Did you know it costs six times more to make a sale to a new customer than to an existing one? You can use newsletters to focus your marketing on past customers. Keep costs down by sacrificing frequency and high production values. If printed newsletters are too expensive, consider an e-mail newsletter sent to people who subscribe at your Web site. 8. Seminars/ open house. Hosting an event is a great way to gain face time with key customers and prospects as well as get your company name circulating. With the right programming, you'll be rewarded with a nice turnout and media coverage. If it's a seminar, limit the attendance and charge a fee. A fee gives the impression of value. Free often connotes, whether intended or not, that attendees will have to endure a sales pitch.9. Bartering. This is an excellent tool to promote your business and get others to use your product and services. You can trade your product for advertising space or for another company's product or service. This is especially helpful when two companies on limited budgets can exchange their services.10. Mail Outs. Enclose your brochure, ad, flyer etc. in all your outgoing mail. It doesn't cost any additional postage and you'll be surprised at who could use what you're offering.
Customer Lifetime Value - The Key To Maximizing Your Profits!
The greatest asset to your business is your Customer,
specifically, your Customer Lifetime Value.
Write Articles WITHOUT Writing!
Face it, writing any article can be a tedious and time
consuming task for a beginner or even an expert writer.
Here are four ways to make writing articles a lot easier:
1) Use My Articles - You could add your own name, resource box and web site link to 199 of my prewritten articles. You can even rewrite them if you want. Just allow other people to republish them. For details visit:http://www.ldpublishing.com/viralarticletoolkit.html
2) Interview An Expert - You could interview an expertin exchange for free publicity. Just ask them questions.It could be about their personal and/or professional life.You want the interview to be long enough to create an article.
3) Excerpts Of Information - You could ask a writer or publisher to use excerpts of their information to create an article in exchange for giving them free publicity. You both could share the resource box of the article.
4) Hire A Ghostwriter - You could hire a ghostwriter to write an article for you. They would write it and you could add your name as the author, a resource box and your web site link.----
Five Mistakes Absolutely Guaranteed to Drive Away Your Best Clients
We all work hard to attract even one paying client. In fact, we work hard to attract serious inquiries. Yet amazingly, many business owners seem determined to drive away business! Every example cited here is based on true, thoroughly documented experiences, with both newbie business owners and five-star marquee players.
Turning The Casual Scanner Into A Buyer
The world is full of scanners. Most people simply scan the page to see if anything piques their interest, rather than reading the ads, sales letters, or web copy. That?s why you should ensure that your copy is scanner friendly. That means placing headlines, subheads, and other devices throughout your copy that?s compelling enough to sell your customers on your business.
How can you turn the casual scanner into an active reader? More importantly, how can we turn a scanner into a buyer? First, ensure that your headlines can stand alone, without the support of other sentences. For most, that means getting rid of those one-word headlines. Headlines should include the benefit of your offering, evoke curiosity, or compel the scanner to read the main copy.
Don?t forget the subheads. They also should be compelling, preferably complementing the headline, giving enough power to nudge your reader from scanning to reading mode. Keep in mind good subheads support the main promise of your copy. If your headline, for example, promises to help your customers lose weight, your subheads could briefly explain that your product is clinically proven or has a secret ingredient. Subheads are also a great place to introduce your offers.
Another way to be a scanner?s friend is to use short paragraphs. Rule of thumb: Keep paragraphs between 3 to 5 sentences. If you must use a long sentence, place a short snappy paragraph after it.
The most popular way to generate interest: Use underlines, boldface, highlights, and italics throughout your copy, carefully. Too much can leave your customers overwhelmed and likely to stop scanning and move on. When using these tools remember, the purpose is to emphasize certain points.
Some ideas on what you should highlight in your copy:
* Call-to-actions phrases, like buy now, subscribe here, or receive your special offer today.
* Contact information, including toll-free numbers, emails, and web-sites.
* Major benefits supporting the promise of your copy
* Your rates and fees and how they compete
* Your business or product?s name.
Adding a second color to your copy boosts retention and readability. Especially, when using a medium that?s typically black and white like newspapers. What colors are best? Typically, the most used and most effective colors are red and blue. Try placing offers or premiums in different colors to emphasize and pull your customers in.
P.S. Don?t forget the P.S. An important aspect, most readers read the end, first. It?s a great spot to recap your offer and restate your benefits. This may also be a good spot to add a bonus, premium, or guarantee
Do you have a website? A Web Newsletter? A mailing list of e-mail addresses for customers? Do you track and test everything? You can use the web to get sales in lots of exciting ways which are dependant on technology that?s available at the time. Whether you budget is Ł600 or Ł6000, I can show you how it?s done effectively time after time after time! So here's what I do when I start working with clients and I would like to offer it to you as a gift now. Have a look at this list of ten great ways of marketing. I guarantee, that nearly all web site owners will not have every one of these simple methods in place right now. Please pick at least two that you're either not doing, or not doing that well - and MAKE A DECISION to add them to your marketing mix in the weeks ahead: Direct Mail Internet Marketing Email Marketing Advertising Telephone Marketing Direct Sales Strategic Alliances Referral Systems PR Additional Products/Services We will tackle these in order Direct Mail Direct mail is often overused and badly done. It?s got a bad reputation over the years, mainly due to spammers, used instead of the telephone or by con artists seeking their next victim. There are a lot of myths and nonsense about mailings. You may want to print this out, because in my continuing efforts to help you reach success ? I am about to share the secrets of direct mail - I?d be surprised if the contents of this mail does not save you thousands of pounds over the next 12 months. By the way, if you are totally new to Direct Mail - ?It?s anything sent by post, sales letters, electronic mail or brochures etc? I want to dispel some things about DM to you. ?Direct Mail doesn?t work? . This ingenious conclusion is arrived at by the fact that most people throw most of the mail we get directly in the bin - therefore the thinking is that it's a waste of money. The truth is that 90 out of 100 people might throw your mailing in the bin, but if 5 people look at it, 5 more read it and one of those 5 buys from you - you may well have a highly profitable mailing. Last week I sent 400 emails to potential clients, and got 37 replies. That?s to say that 37 people actually read my mail, and I got exactly 9 new clients as a result. Now what would happen if I doubled my mailings next week? I could expect from 800 mails, about 80 replies and maybe 20 sales! And that?s easily doable by the way, because I?ve done it. But saying that, your mailing may not work ? it depends on what you say, price involved and some products may just not be suited to an email campaign. It?s very much a numbers game, but one thing is certain, email is free! You have to enter this knowing that most of your mailings will go unread, but at least it?s cheaper than other advertising methods. Large companies like Capital One, know their mailings DO work ? they?ve spent a fortune fine tuning and testing these campaigns. But just to warn you ? direct mail can fail, and they are the ones, usually, small to medium businesses send out, because they don?t understand what they are really doing. If it?s done right, it will make your profits increase dramatically, and when it?s done badly ? it can eat into a budget, so be very careful! There are 2 types of mailings: Potential Customers Existing Customers If you don?t do much mailing ? start doing some now. It?s easy to not email out of fear of upsetting clients, scared of bombarding them with too many mails, thus losing a sale. That?s crazy and it?s to nobodys advantage. Actually, most sales emails are helpful and quite genuine. I was once told ?You?ve got to be mad to not listen to a salesman ? they might have something you need!? So next time you receive a mail or telesales call, consider that it could well be in your favour. And there really is nothing wrong with sending out 2 mails each week.. So don?t worry. I have noticed that many clients are sitting with 1000?s of email addresses ? yet they aren?t contacting these clients. That?s like throwing money down the drain. They could say NO, then again they could say YES to your product. Imagine if a further 10 bought your services next week ? how do you feel about not emailing those customers now? Try it today?.. Think of something you can offer these customers, you must have something you can offer! Even something for free. Send them a letter and measure the response. If it works, mail them and measure the results. If it keeps on working, keep on doing it! The best email is a personal communication with a customer you know. It may read as follows: Dear----------- I wanted to follow up after your purchase of (your product) on (date) to see how it's working out for you and to thank you for your continuing business. If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know by return email, or feel free to call my private phone number. Many Thanks Regards Mr X Your customer is going to open, read and appreciate an email like this. They may even respond to it, and even if they don't, it doesn't look like spam or bug anyone. And they probably will appreciate that. ------------------------------...Give it a go ? you?ll be surprised. Regards Christopher Given www.busigen.com
Top 10 Marketing Pitfalls
Ten Marketing Pitfalls
By Stuart Reid
What Does It REALLY Take to Be Making 6-Figures as a Service Professional?
Over the past 30 years, I've read so much on how to makemoney that I know I can write a series of books on thetopic, books that would cut through the junk and you don'thave to buy 101 things for each area.
Here's a proven, and truly easy way to start increasing your sales, immediately.
Make More Sells With Colors
How Colors Effect Our Emotions?
The Fine Art of Relationship Marketing
The buzzword these days is ?relationship? marketing. Just what is it? And why is it important? Relationship marketing is so much more than ?networking. It?s gathering support of your friends, peers, and business contacts. It?s developing strong, lasting, unique relationships with your most valuable asset, your customer. It?s what keeps people ?coming back for more.? It?s an excellent way to shorten the traditional routes of building trust, create opportunities, increase valuable contacts, to achieve success and excel in business.
Focus...a Marketing Strategy
The secret to increasing sales doesn't lie in choosing just the right marketing tactic for each of your businesses. The real problem that's experienced by many entrepreneurs--a damaging lack of focus.
Fern Reisss PublishingGame.com: Achieve Media Attention for Your Business
Do you want to be quoted by the national press on a daily basis? (How much would that be worth to your business?)
More Articles from Marketing Information:
Successful Brand Building: Marketing's Four P's RevisitedForbesâ€śWhat is marketing?â€ť If you ask five different people this question, you'll likely get five different answers. When I was in school, the answer was much more structured and straightforward: We were told that marketing is more or less a set of processes ...
Marketing for a New Age: Being Digital vs. Doing DigitalAdAge.comTo thrive in an increasingly technology-dominated world, marketing organizations need to adopt a unique set of traits that are helping the world's top digital companies dominate the competitionâ€”traits we call their "Digital DNA." These traits should ...
The Value of a Good Sales Letter!
Regardless of how many forms of promotional material you create, the simple yet very important sales letter never goes out of style. As a matter of fact a good sales letter should definitely be included as part of your marketing strategy for it can be the most effective tool over any other promotional material. A good sales letter gives you an opportunity to make a smashing impression right out of the gate. The following are some strategies to consider when preparing your letter.
The 3 Unknown Steps of Marketing Success
To be your own marketing expert you first need to know where to begin. It's no good learning how to be a good copywriter, if you don't know what medium is best to promote your work through.
Keeping your Business Card visible
Famous quotes that keep you thinking.
Marketing with Special Reports. 5 Ways to Develop Content Your Prospects Cant Wait to Read
So you've decided to start publishing an e-newsletter, or you'd like to develop a Special Report as an added-value for your customers, or maybe you've even decided to teach a teleclass or a seminar as a way to bring prospects into your business.
How to Discover your Primary Market and Where to Find Them
Whether you market online or offline, you already know the shot-gun approach to marketing brings few results. You will sell more products and services when you step back and set up a strategy to reach your targeted market.
Making Networking Work
Several years ago, "networking" was the hot buzzword. Everyone was talking about building their network, because this was the secret to becoming incredibly successful. Well, yes, networking is a great way to build a business, but not necessarily the way a lot of people went about it.
Whats Your Selling Sentence?
What's your Selling Sentence? If you have a
business, you need a selling sentence.
Competitive Research and Google
It all started out with an email message: "I am starting a new one of a kind company
... at least I think I'm one of a kind ... how do I find out who else out there might
have beat me to the punch? And how do I build a web page to advertise my
hopefully one of kind new business?"
Eight Steps To A Great Marketing Plan
Step 1: Where Am I Now?
Using Business Cards as Invitations
Business card size works well
for invitations to special events.
15 Commandments Of Creating A Wealth Pulling Niche
Niches are like bathrooms; you never notice them until you need one."
- Primm (From NicheBrain.com)
Why Instant Gratification Marketing Condemns Businesses To Losing 90% Of Their Potential Customers
Most businesses target only people "ready-to-buy". These hot prospects are "Now Buyers" because they've been inching closer to a decision for some period of time. They're just about ready to spend cash. Advertisers target "Now Buyers" because the pressure is on to make sales immediately. And, they know these prospects are most qualified, from a timing standpoint.
Mail Can Make You Money
Are you still waiting for business to turn around before you start direct mail marketing? Waiting around won't get you any business. The time to start is now.
Online Communities - A Marketers Wildest Dream and Worst Nightmare!
Online Communities are all over the Internet and attract lots of visitors which make them ideal for marketing. People participating in these communities share information about whatever they want under various topics. Some of these discussions get very heated while others go by nearly un-noticed. Spammers have made their mark in these communities by making many of these forums unbearable to legitimate marketers. Informational posts that are commercial in nature are often "Flamed" as being advertisements, solicitations, or even spam. This can easily discourage a new marketer, and possibly even destroy their career. The online community at www.eSpiritCommunications.Com is one acception. They have taken the "Flame" away by creating a online community for marketers, business owners, and consumers. The environment is friendly, and everyone posts and reads what they want in the forums. There are no "Bullies" running around because the rules allow advertising in appropriate categories.
Get FREE Web Tips From Your Competition
I knew this one would get your attention. How can you, the savvy business entrepreneur, get FREE ANYTHING from your competition? The answer is simple: Google!Yes, there are many things that Google can solve. As listed above, they are providing their users with endless utilities to help you in your web search. So how can they help you with your site? Watch this: Go to Google (http://www.google.com) and type in the following, exactly as shown, using your business URL in place of the examplelink:www.yourwebsite.comThe results show you a listing of all sites that link to your site. While chances are your competition will not be listed, you can get an overview of the 'type' of websites that link to you. If there are a bunch of similar sites, that can help you with your marketing and target advertising in the future.Now here's where the fun begins. Now that you know who links to you, check out the competition. Put in those guys down the street who provide the same service you do.link:www.theirwebsite.comWho's linking to them? Are there some big names listed that you WISH were linking to you? You may find out that getting your name on that list is easier than you thought. Sometimes a simple email to the webmaster will get you added to the list. The more quality businesses that link to you, the higher your search engine results climb.Are there businesses that link to your competition that you didn't know exist? Maybe you can get a cheaper rate on parts, or better service from a vendor on that list. The possibilities are there, investigate!Want another idea? Go to your competition's website. Are they offering a service ONLINE that you only wish you could? Are they offering a custom login or other special feature that you don't have? Maybe you should consider offering those items to your customers.
Give your customers something that keeps them coming back. Whether it's an online newsletter, a simple coupon, or other feature, get it online. Have fun learning from your competition, and good luck on increasing that bottom line!
What Are People Buying Online?
Benefits, that's what!
Wise Man Marketing
It's a sunny morning and you're sitting in your office. With a cup of hot coffee by your side and memories of your last holiday still fresh in your mind, even if you say so yourself, today at least, life is sweet.
Whats In a Business Card?
Over the years as I have attended trade shows, networking meetings, chamber events and more; I have noticed a few things about the successful and the not so successful. First of all, do you have a business card?
If you belong to a large corporation, you were probably issued business cards as a matter of course, almost as if it was a company perk. If you are in a small or home-based business, chances are you, personally, made the effort to get business cards, which entailed design, print and distribution. So if you went to all of the trouble of acquiring them, you should use them to your advantage. Here are a few tried and true rules for marketing with your card.
1. Never leave home without the cards. I have stopped for coffee already and had someone ask me for a card because they saw my car sign as I pulled into the local coffee shop lot. If you want people to discredit you as a businessperson, all you have to do is say "Oh sorry I forgot my cards today." I have even been to trade shows and fellow exhibitors were walking around without cards. You have not only lost an immediate opportunity to market your business, but you look like an amateur who doesn't deserve the business.
2. Is the information correct? The reality is that sometimes we change our contact information. If you know that there will be changes in the near future, then limit the number of cards you have printed. Do not, scribble out and hand write information on your card. Back to "Can anyone say amateur?" I said that to someone once and his reply was, "yes but business cards are expensive." That says two things to me: 1) he didn't shop around for a good price and 2) AMATEUR! The idea is to attract business not scare it away.
3. Does the card say what you want it to say? What message are you trying to get across? When designing a business card, think about the placement of information on the card. Is the key information in a prominent place on the card? Does the design work with the rest of your company image? Your business card should be an extension of your company just like your logo, stationery, checks, signage, website and more. They should all get across the same message and design.
4. Can prospective clients contact you easily with the information provided on your card? This is a big one!
Is your website up to date?
Do you check your email at least once a day? (and respond!)
Is your email address professional (not email@example.com)
Is your voice mail message clear, concise and professional?
In this day of technology everyone assumes you must have email and a website for your business to be successful. This is not necessarily true. If you do not conduct business via email or internet then do not put that information on your card. No matter what you use, the key is to be accessible.
5. Are you marketing with your business card? Keeping them in your pocket is a waste of time and money. Be clear about who your target client is. When you see an opportunity slip in your business card. Do not be rude and pushy, but confident that the person could benefit from your services.
If you are not sure that your business card is getting you where you want, market test it. Give it to some friends and colleagues and ask them for their opinions. If your friends are not going to be honest with you, then try "strangers." At the next event you attend ask some people what they think of your design.
4 Steps to Successful Offline Drawings
There are many different ways to market offline, each important to your success. One of these being drawings. Not only does having a drawing bring attention to you and your product/service, but also brings you leads.
Mobile Auto Detailers and Newspaper Companies as Clientele
If you are a mobile auto detailer or mobile car wash company you might wish to think of attaining the local newspaper as a strategic client for your services. Usually newspapers have large staffs, especially daily newspapers. They do everything in house to save costs. They obviously have lots of cars to clean and this means plenty of customers. In fact as a mobile auto detailer or car washer this could be a half a days stop on your route or even a full day depending on the size or the paper. Think of the employees of a newspaper?