Are you always on the outlook for new ideas to turn your ideas into $$$$s?
Do you look at new promotional media and new ways to to get the word out about your product or service or do you do the same old
media (magazines, newspapers, Television)?
DIGITAL has CHANGED the WORLD
According to an article in Newspaper Death Watch professional marketers are changing their use of media, especially print. Depending on their target audience, they are using the media that is actually relevant to their audiences. That sometimes means digital. That could mean visual in places where their prospects frequent or it could mean finding new fun promotional techniques to help people reach their audience.
The professionals are aware that the world has changed.
(professionals meaning here people who are paid to do the promotion)
Competitions, social media promotions and games or contests allow direct and indirect promotion. They create fun and excitement. One such option is a scavenger hunt like the one currently being run by Firepole Marketing. (Wow do I admire what they are doing)
Now doing a contest or a competition, a scavenger hunt or even a social media campaign takes WORK.
You need to keep priming the pump.
You need to keep the excitement happening.
You need to track what you are delivering.
You need to keep people informed about what is happening
In the good old days of advertising, you designed your ad, placed it in your media and made sure that when people responded to the ad, your suppliers and staff could fulfill the orders. The work came in preparing the ad and making sure you could deliver what was promised in your advertisement.
In the second decade of the 21st century, you need to keep the energy and excitement going.
- You need to respond to the tweets,
- Support the Facebook likes, shares and comments,
- Answer questions and comments on blogs and
- Spend time and energy interacting with people to keep the excitement up.
And that is WORK.
Work that many small business people fail to understand or plan for.
Yes Virtual assistants can help you but only if they have clear, measurable goals.
The other day, Sherryl Perry, in Keep up with the Web wrote a blog on what to measure (Tracking Your Blog Post SEO Meta Tag Data). I asked Sherryl about how she tracks and I am hoping that she will write a blog around her answer to my comment. One thing – even to track takes WORK.
Writing a book takes WORK!
Writing a blog takes WORK!
Creating a product takes WORK!
Delivering a service takes WORK!
Building a relationship takes WORK!
Maintaining a relationship once built takes WORK!
Work is a four letter word but it is one that will help you earn dollars rather than one that gets your mouth washed out with soap (do they still do that?).
If you want to turn your ideas into dollars, you need to plan to work. And finding out what to work at, what to do takes PLANNING and PREPARATION.
Remember if you have the money to pay others to do the work, you are using the money that you worked for to save you time and buy the time and effort of others.
WORK costs – money and time.
What work are you doing today to help your ideas become the dollars you want? Share your work in the comments below. And yes that takes work but it helps get your message to a wider audience.
To your success in making those ideas = $$$$$s
Why does community matter to businesses success?
There are several reasons but the biggest one relates to trust. We trust experts. We trust friends. We trust those who are in our circles of influence. And our circles are communities.
Have you observed that communities who experience a common event – an earthquake, a riot, a parade or a festival, react in a similar way for a time. The event brings people together in either joy or misery. While most events are only for a short time, a community attitude grows over time.
There are many studies that look at how a community attitude affects a workplace and success and how the way we perceive community affects our business
The other day I was working with a unique business whose owners were very tired. Their business was flagging and systems and processes that they once had in place were no longer being used. One of the two owners was concerned that they would miss out on opportunities if they made a statement about who they were. Now in the same community, another business owner was thriving because their attitude was to lead the pack and create something different.
How to use Community for your business
Every marketing book says find a need but if you only look at the individual you miss the real need – the community need. NLP teaches about our need for connection and separation but my perceptions says that separation is only comfortable if first you are connected. When you belong to a community, you can then afford to be different.
To succeed in business find the community need and then you can find the personal need.
For example, in education, the community needs certain skills – doctors, lawyers, social workers, political scientists, engineers, scientists, poets, IT specialists, refuse collectors etc. But on an individual level, the schools appeal to the nature of a person to study a certain set of subjects.
In health care, the community needs healthy people – accident free, disease free and mentally alert and yet everything the conventional and alternate medical fields deal with is problems, dis-ease, disaster, cancers and other growths that consume communities of people. Allergies, autism, depression, stress are identified every day by professionals and patients and the need that each “medical professional” attempts to meet is to cure or circumvent the “problem”.
The experts talk about building lists and affiliates to help you spread the word through their community. But the other day a colleague told me that engaged community was the secret to his success. And engaged communities mean people interacting with each other and the practitioner or business owner.
It means that collaboration and co-operation are becoming more essential for business survival.
We all know the saying - birds of a feather flock together but have you thought about who you have in your community?
And what are the community needs where your business is operating?
Are you trying to meet individual needs or the community needs?
Are you hanging out in a community of your peers or the community of your prospects?
Sometimes your peers will become clients but often your peers will see you as competition first and then only later as the source of assistance.
One last word on Community (for today)
Let me know in the comments about the communities you belong to and please share this blog with your community and see what they think.
Thanks for communing
In case you haven’t read recent articles, LinkedIn is growing by leaps and bounds — solid and steady. So, what I want to know is…. are you on-board?
If you find yourself wondering, “Why isn’t my business growing? Why don’t I have greater visibility? Why is my business growing at a slow and steady pace rather than exploding?” — it’s time to get serious about LinkedIn.
LinkedIn affords you the largest and most focused professional social platform on the planet. It delivers a tremendous opportunity to source connections, leads and prospects. Exactly how should you take the leap into LinkedIn? A great technique you can implement immediately is…
Connection “Tags” – Build Your Lists
I’m sure you’ve heard the statement, “The money is in the list.” LinkedIn lets you build a list almost immediately upon setting up your profile. Organizing your connections, from the onset, will not only save you time but will also enable you to engage target markets.
LinkedIn “tags” is a great tool. After accepting connection invitations, it is crucial to visit “Connections” in your LinkedIn profile and “tag” these people.
You can create lists for specific prospects, types of clients or even according to location.
“Tags” also build your lists and provide an awesome opportunity to ‘in-mail’ that particular list (tag) in order to share company information, links to videos, gain important information (go ahead…ask questions!) or anything else you might do when attempting to turn leads or connections into customers or clients.
Visit your LinkedIn profile and click on “Contacts” – this will take you to your list of connections.
Next, click on the link entitled “untagged.”
Hover over the first connection, click, and the information for that contact will appear on the right side.
Under the connections information, you will see a link entitled “Edit Tags” — click on that link.
A list of tags will drop down. Select one or however many pertain to that contact. You can also ADD new tags too!
Be sure to “Save” the tag(s)! You can confirm that your contact was tagged by viewing “All Connections” to ensure the numbers have increased. Next, check to ensure your “untagged” numbers have decreased.
After completing the above steps, you are now ready to begin connecting with contacts within the specific lists you created through utilizing “tags.”
This is just one of the many features that LinkedIn offers to almost make your profile a custom business website. Take some time and check out how ‘tagging’ your connections can be help you start prospecting for leads and building your list.
Guest Author: Lynn Brown – Social Media Marketing Manager, Coach – Blogging Strategist and LinkedIn Specialist helping small business owners, online marketers and professionals achieve increased company branding and visibility through social media for their specific products, programs or industry. Complimentary consultation available.
Your brand is a representation of the image you want to portray to your clients. Your brand includes things that are :
- Visual representation of your business – your colours, your fonts when writing. Everything that your prospects, clients and customers see when they look at your business. It includes your logo, your photos and your place of business. How you look to others.
- Auditory representation of your business – what people hear when they call your business, how the words you write sound in their head, the jingles and sounds associated with your business. If you create verbal materials like videos, podcasts, commercials these contribute to your brand. How you talk when face to face contributes to your brand and your image.
- The smells that get associated with your business and you. Yes restaurants and bakeries easily have the smell image but every business has the smell of the people who work there and the atmosphere of the business as well. And if you work online, then the smell that affects your client is in their environment.
- The feel of your business. Every client judges your image and brand on what they feel when they contact your business. If you make them feel valued, comfortable and important then that is what they feel. If they feel like they are intruding or a nuisance, then they may resist dealing with your business.
- And finally we have taste but think of taste as the gut. We all use our gut instinct to judge the quality of the business we are dealing with. So think of what you want your client’s gut to say about your brand and your image.
Did you realise that your image is based on the senses? And because the senses are what your prospect uses to determine if they want to use your business, you need to appeal to the senses.
And then realise your image creates the picture and you are now able create your brand. Branding is the representation of your image that portrays you to others. A brand is like the mark that says it’s YOU!
Successful companies try to keep their brands separate for different products. The Coke Cola brand differs from other products make by Coke. Nike however uses the same image and brand across all its products and the message is consistent. Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft use the same brand and image across their full range of products as do businesses like WalMart, Sears and Nordstrum.
If you own a small business you have two choices.
- Create an image and brand based on you.
- Create an image or brand based on something other than you.
The first is personal and easy to build relationships on. The second builds a wealth generating business. (More on that later)
Which do you want? Have you used your image to create your brand? Is your image sense based?
Helping your business grow
What is a professional? Is it the result of the education and position you hold or is it an attitude and behavior standard
that one holds oneself too?
According to my online dictionary the word professional is both an adjective and a noun as follows: