As technology and innovation increasingly shape and control the lives of individuals, markets need to learn how to connect with consumers using those technological and innovative means! Here are a few ways you can better reach customers whenever you need, wherever they are.
Put Mobile First
Much of consumer attention and interaction happens on their mobile cellular devices. Make sure your online presence is compatible with mobile use! Consider hiring a web designer to create pages that are as functional and aesthetically pleasing on a phone screen as they are on a computer screen! This ensures ease of use regardless of what form of technology they access your information on. Mobile “compatibility” includes marketing and design elements—advertisements should fit the platform they’re housed on, and should be interactive enough to keep viewers interested. Make your mobile accessibility a priority, so that your consumers can get to you from anywhere.
Use SMS Marketing
The list of available means of marketing seems endless with technology and online platforms existing today. However, some of these tools are more popular for certain groups of people than for others! Figure out which of those platforms is most commonly used by your target audience and utilize that platform as a primary source of communication. For example, although email may effectively reach older generations who have become comfortable with that form of messaging, younger generations may flock more to social media outlets like Instagram or Twitter. Short message service (SMS) messaging is an effective means of communication for all ages. In fact, you are losing a big opportunity by not using SMS marketing because it has a 98% open rate. Your time and resources are best spent focused on tools like this, that reach the largest amounts of people in the most effective ways possible.
Partner With Bigger Brands
Gain more exposure for your company by partnering with larger businesses! These businesses that consumers interact with or see most frequently offer you an opportunity to reach a much broader audience. Furthermore, this method simultaneously creates a sense of trust— knowing that the bigger company trusts yours enough to partner with it will reflect well on consumers who are considering your relevance and value to them. You will be connecting with potential customers, making your name more recognizable and your business info more accessible.
Reach consumers everywhere by making your business a part of their everyday interactions with technology and other markets. This interaction will encourage more frequent business at a more accessible level!
Read this next: How to Grab Customers with These Top 5 Video Marketing Strategies
So many people are talking about Facebook Marketing... giving advice about how to get more "likes", how to get "cheap clicks" and how to make a bazillion dollars using Facebook. It's easy they assure us! So long as we hand over $97 to them. Forget about that. Read the principles to success here:
The 3 basic but important things you need to remember are:
That's it, and that is the order of priorities. (Yes that is the order!)
When you create your Facebook ads, make sure you are targeting the right people - your ideal clients, the people who are more inclined to buy your product or service.
Action Step: Document your ideal client demographics and psychographics (personality, values, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles).
Create an Offer that your target market would find irresistible. How do you do that? By understanding your target market's problems and desires and creating an offer that will overcome their problem and achieve their desire.
Action Step: What does your target market want to avoid and what do they want to achieve? Create an offer that addresses both.
Why is Message only #3 - Message is all about the text, what you say and how you say it. Surely your message would be more important? Well, let's look at it: Imagine you ran a shoe shop and had a 2-for-1 deal on the best most expensive running shoes on the market but you were not eloquent and your grammar was awful, because you have the right target and an irresistible, relevant offer you will still generate sales.
Talk your target market's language and talk about them, not about you.
Take the "Me, Myself, and I" test. Don't know what I am talking about? Count how many times you talk about "I", "We", "Us", "Our company" and add up how many times you talk about your prospect and their challenges and desires and compare the difference. Are you talking about yourself more than you are to your target market?
Action Step: What words and phrases does your target market use to explain their situation, problems and desires? Use those words and phrases to explain your offer. Talk about your prospect more than you talk about yourself.
So next time you are creating advertising, whether it be on Facebook or anywhere for that matter, remember the 3 elements of a successful advertisement, and remember this order of priority.
If you’re building your business brand in today’s marketplace, you need to stand head and shoulders above the crowd of other businesses competing for your customers’ attention.
Furthermore, you need to track how effective your brand building is, by monitoring it closely and reacting accordingly.
Your brand could well be your most valuable business asset and can mean the difference between a lifetime of loyal and avid customers, or simply being lost in the crowd of other brand marketers on Facebook and Twitter.
Let’s look at five ways for you to measure and track your brand in today’s online world.
1. Are Your Fans Engaging With You?
Social media and the internet has changed the way we do business. Gone are the days when you marketed to your customers. These days marketing is a two way conversation, with social engagement taking place between the business and consumers. Relationships are built by being responsive to your customers needs.
A great example of fan engagement is the French telecommunications company, Orange, who used Twitter to engage their fans. Followers were asked to use the hashtag #thissummer to tweet about the plans they had for summer, which were then broadcast on Orange's blog, with a Voice Over. This had the twofold effect of both creating massive traffic, and enabling people to identify with Orange around an interesting and enjoyable topic.
2. How Much Real Value Are you Adding To The Conversation?
The content you offer needs to be the sort that people enjoy and encourages them to share with others, just like Healthy Choice did. They increased engagement with their followers, and gained an extra 10,000 fans by offering a low value Facebook coupon, which increased in value as their fan base grew. This not only reinforced their brand image with existing customers, but the majority of new fans also subscribed to their newsletter.
3. Are You Trying To Take More Than You're Giving?
Social media is about building a loyal and responsive following, by giving often, and taking infrequently. Think of it as a savings account. You must put in regular deposits, so you can reap the benefits when you need to make a withdrawal. Giving freely without asking for something in return will translate to massive positive response from your fans when you do decide to ask for something.
4. Are You Actually Listening To The Online Conversation?
Today’s customer is a powerful being, with the ability to impact your business in a matter of minutes. It’s therefore essential that you’re listening to the conversation that’s going on all around you, so you can respond to any negativity before it wreaks havoc with your business. Learn from U-Haul’s mistake, who suffered long term damage to their well established brand, as well as lost thousands of dollars, because of a negative conversation about them which they weren’t listening to. Even negative feedback can turn into a positive experience because it shows others that you’re concerned and responsive to their issues.
5. Is Your Website Active With Engagement, or Is It Silent And Stagnant?
Just having a website, no matter how flashy or attractive you think it is, simply isn’t enough anymore. Build it and they will come is an internet myth. Customers want to visit websites and blogs on which they can find interesting and engaging information, and which they want to bookmark and return to often because they look forward to your new content. A simple way to encourage your website visitors to engage with you is to end your articles and blog posts with a question that encourages the reader to respond.
What do you want most out of your marketing efforts?
The words “Buy Local” are showing up in all kinds of marketing pitches. For food and farm commodities, the words guarantee fresher foods that have not traveled miles to get to the dinner table. For service work or contractors, the words guarantee that the provider lives in the same town or county. For the consumer, the words guarantee that the company is not only local, but available and accountable.
Many consumers have grown weary of dealing with impersonal, big box warehouse types of businesses. They still don’t want to pay a whole lot more for a product or service BUT they will if they think it will benefit them in the long run.
For instance, let’s say Jane Smith is looking for new carpet. She has an idea of what she wants and goes to Store A. The person in Store A can tell her about the products in stock, show her a catalog for special orders, and answer questions about delivery times.
Then she goes to Store B. The person in Store B can sell her the same products but also asks her questions. What room is she looking to carpet? Does she plan to live there for two years or 20 years? Does she have pets? Based on the answers to those questions, the person in Store B might recommend a carpet that is better suited to her personal situation. Jane Smith evaluates the information and decides to make her purchase at Store B because the person there was genuinely interested in helping her figure out what was best for her.
Running a business and marketing a business is always about more than the bottom line. It is about your knowledge, your reputation, and individualized customer service. As Bill Maynard and Tom Champoux, of The Effectiveness Institute say, “It does not need to be a choice between head decisions and heart decisions. An organization that balances head decisions and heart decisions has a far greater potential for achieving and sustaining success than an organization that doesn’t have heart.”
It doesn’t matter what kind of business you are in. Whether you are a small business, single person shop, a growing family business, a successful employer of dozens of people, your goal is the same. You want to get the word out about what you have to offer. Obviously, you know about the importance of having business cards and a website. You might also need to have printed materials to give to customers to tell them about existing or new services. It might be to your advantage to have a Facebook page, a Twitter account, or paid advertising. As you weigh the advantages and disadvantages of various forms, don’t forget that you might be able to get some ** FREE ** publicity from your local newspaper.
Here are some ideas:
Ask yourself these questions:
Over 85% of people contact businesses they find in local searches. That's why 100% of businesses need to be online! Your local business has many options, to remain current online such as a website, business facebook page, social networks, videos, blogs, online ads, etc. Even for businesses with a limited marketing budget, there are ways to promote your business online. Here are 10 free ways to promote your business online:
When it comes to print design, you have more than one option open to you. There are many ways to brand your company and do it on a small budget.
Here are 10 print design products and how you can make them work for your business: