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16 tips to market like a pro, sort of…

marketing-board-strategyLet’s face it, if you’re like most business owners, you simply either don’t have time to market or you just plain hate marketing. Some people just don’t get it period and it’s a constantly ever-changing industry. It seems that new platforms are introduced daily and it’s hard to keep up with what works and what doesn’t. It’s important to always be marketing – no matter what.

Here are a few things we recommend to most businesses along with some tips to help you market your business effectively. This is not an exhaustive list by any means, but what I feel are things that work well.

  1. Find out where your target market hangs out. Facebook, Twitter, the local coffee shop, a mechanics bay, the ice cream parlor, you get the picture.
  2. Determine where your money is best spent. Digital marketing works best because you can effectively target your specific market and measure ROI and analytics. You can’t do that with yellow pages, newspaper, or print advertising.pexels-photo-266176
  3. Join trade associations and use all of their networking opportunities.
  4. Write a column or articles for local newspapers, trade publications, etc.
  5. Host educational seminars, webinars and then video them and post on YouTube.
  6. Hold an annual Open House Event. Spring Fling, Harvest Days, Fiesta, Oktoberfest, etc.
  7. Have product or service giveaways monthly, people love swag, give away a free t-shirt, or coffee mug, or movie ticket, etc.
  8. Develop Press Releases for every NEW product or service you launch, when you hire new employees or key staff members when you have upcoming events, fundraisers, etc.
  9. Build an email list, get subscribers on your website, and produce a monthly newsletter loaded with helpful tips, suggestions, info, resources, and more. No sales techniques here! Just good ol’ awesome content.
  10. Have a booth at trade shows and events that your target market attends. Be sure it’s a nice professional booth. Convey your professionalism.
  11. Donate your products or services to local charity events and silent auctions.
  12. Create a loyalty program for your brand ambassadors and kick ass customers. People love being recognized for their dedication.
  13. Participate in local events in your community like parades, farmer’s markets, fundraisers, gala’s, etc.
  14. Offer monthly and holiday specials. You can package lower selling products with higher selling products to move inventory. Partner up with other businesses and offer package deals.
  15. Interview other professionals associated with your business, showcase them in your blog, video, social media, etc. You can also volunteer to be a gues speaker at events.
  16. Host a weekly meet and greet, chat session, or morning coffee with the boss, etc. Answer question and engage with your audience. People don’t want to see corporate structure, they want raw all natural people.

 

Tina Holtz is a serial entrepeneur who owns and operates a boutique virtual assisting and business advisory firm, Executive Business Services, LLC. She has more than 20 years experience in business development, business management, operations, sales, marketing, and procurement. Tina values building relationships and is passionate about helping business owners reach new heights. She provides a vast array of support services to business owners, entrepreneurs, professionals, and executives.

 970-989-8047 or email at tina@execbusinessservices.com

www.execbusinessservices.com

Business Savvy

A Loss of Respect

I have to say that I am so utterly shocked these days in the lack of respect that potential employers have for applicants who apply for their open positions.

Recently my husband has had to start looking for a new job, and for the last two months he has applied over and over again for multiple positions with multiple companies, only to never hear from them, EVER! Not a phone call, not an email, not even a letter. We sit here wondering if any of these employers are ever going to call or what happened with his application. Was it even received?

What does that say about a business or company? What does that do to a company’s image? It is crucial for businesses to remember that even when going through the hiring process, applicants are still consumers who may use their products or services, or know someone who might. Treating people poorly or with lack of respect in any capacity is just poor business. People talk and people will remember anytime something negative happens to them. Trust me, it’s not worth the risk of giving your company a black eye.

If you place an ad seeking applicants for an open position within your business, every applicant deserves a response, period. Even if it’s an automated email response that notifies the applicant that their application has been received and that someone will respond within a specified time frame.

Another suggestion is that if you have 32 applicants and you know that only four are being considered, it would be best to send a letter or email to the applicants who are not being considered that you appreciate their application and interest within your company, but that you have chosen a candidate that you feel best fits your needs at this time. Once you have chosen the applicant that fits your needs, every other applicant deserves notification that the position has been filled. You may even want to offer to keep their resume on file for future openings and offer them the option. I have found some of my best employees by going back through previous applicants and giving them a second chance.

I hired employees for one of my past employers, and I took a lot of pride in the fact that I contacted every applicant with an update on our hiring process. I had a position where more than 70 applicants applied, but I took the time to contact each one of them and it really built a strong reputation for my employer and myself and provided a glimpse of our true professionalism.

I am not sure why the rules of the game seem to have changed over the last decade, and why no one takes the time to treat each other with respect and professionalism, but everyone deserves to know where they stand, especially when they are applying for a job that will support and sustain their livelihood. Nothing is more concerning than that part of your life and the not knowing if you are being offered a job or not.

I guess I see it like this, if you have a car and you need it serviced and you call 10 different service providers and you never hear anything back from them, what does that say about their company? The same thing can be said for a business who handles the hiring of employees.

Take the time and be appreciative that someone was willing to apply for a position within your company. You will get better applicants and additional referrals when you seek future candidates.

Miss Executive-Tina

Social Media/Online Marketing

4 INCREDIBLE Reasons Why You Need Twitter!

People often ask me what Twitter is and why they need it. Most people tell me that they think it’s a joke and that people just use it to say silly things, like what they just ate for lunch, or how bored they are at work, or what their dog just…… wait, never mind on that one, you get the picture.

Actually they couldn’t be more wrong. Although some people who use Twitter on a personal side might use it in such a fashion, we business professionals use it in a totally different way. It’s really no different than how you use Facebook or LinkedIn, when you’re networking professionally it’s good to keep your personal life out of the business part of your life. Twitter is amazing for business and the sooner you jump in and get your feet wet, the better you’re going to be.

Do yourself and your business a favor and get your Twitter account today, it will take less than five minutes and soon you’ll have quite a following. Just a tip here: ENGAGE. Engage every day, several times a day if you can. It will take some getting used to, but before you know it, you’ll be thinking of all sorts of things to tweet about.

Twitter

Here’s my 4 INCREDIBLE reasons why you need Twitter:

1.) Connecting with customers

Millions of people are using Twitter everyday, and they tweet only a sentence or two at a time, but it’s proven to be successful for businesses too. You can tweet about new products or services and be ahead of your competitors if their not using Twitter yet. You can engage with your customers on a level that would otherwise be non existent. Imagine reaching hundreds, possibly thousands of people in a matter of minutes, who are all talking about you and your business and retweeting and sharing your product information. Let’s not forget it’s FREE! Twitter is what is often times called viral. It takes only mere seconds to share news with millions of people.

2.) Branding your business

People usually think that you have to a big brand before someone is interested in following you. This could not be farther from the truth. If you have customers, trust me, they want to be following you to keep up with what’s going on in your business and what new products and services you might have that they need. They want to be the first to know and the first to have the newest toy. By engaging with your customers each and everyday through Twitter, you’ve increased your brand loyalty. You’ve kept them informed, you’ve helped them with what they need and you’ve made them feel important by taking only a few moments out of your day. What more could you ask for?

3.) Customer Service

You can provide an all new level of customer service through Twitter. Your constant engagement with your customers ensures that they are always in the know. Imagine knowing when your doctor’s office got a new piece of medical equipment that might be useful to your needs, or your favorite car wash is out of order, or the newest line of spring clothing arrived today and your one of the first to know. Tweet new hours of operation, promotions, even offering one day promotions is a great sales tool, coupons, giveaways, the list is endless.

4.) Marketing

The best thing about any social media platform, especially Twitter is that your reaching a target audience you otherwise wouldn’t be able to reach. When you advertise in direct mail, newspapers, etc., you’re usually reaching a specific number of people, let’s say 4,000 in this example. Most people don’t carry that ad with them in their pocket and show it to everyone they talk to that day, your reach is still about 4,000 people, give or take. But with social media and Twitter, your one tweet can reach an unlimited number of people and FAST. I don’t know a business out there that wouldn’t agree that word of mouth and referrals are the best possible recommendations a business can get. Social media and Twitter are doing just that. Their broadcasting your business via word of mouth.

Happy Tweeting! Oh yes and remember to Follow Me on Twitter @HoltzTina.

Tina Holtz, Miss Executive