From my personal years of experience, I have noticed two types of business owners. One who gives up after the first try or one who doesn’t. The tricky thing about marketing (advertising, promotions, social media) is that there isn’t one general way to do it right. Everything is dependent on something different. Just because a business was successful in one strategy doesn’t mean another business can use the same exact plan.
It’s important to understand the different elements that goes into perfecting a marketing strategy:
1. Target Market Demographics
2. Data Analysis
3. Product or Service
4. Channel of Communication
5. Customer Experience
6. Company History
7. Current Events
…and so much more! With that stated, anyone is bound to hit or miss with this many elements to consider. The reason why some businesses feel so defeated when it comes to marketing is partly because they’ve failed before and spending money to try another strategy that may fail again is just a scary road to take. Other times, businesses find a strategy that works but when they applied it the second time, they failed. Perhaps they try it one more time and either they succeed or fail, they make up their mind that it’s just too much trouble to figure out.
Some businesses buried their marketing strategy box so far below the ground that when newspaper reps, social media managers, or ad agencies approach them, they just completely shut the idea of spending money with no guaranteed results. The mystery of marketing is all in the result and no one likes that kind of mystery. :)
It’s important for businesses to set aside a marketing budget, which is normally 10% of the previous year’s profit. Remember that marketing expenses are write offs and “out of site, out of mind.” As a small business owner, you have to commit to never giving up after a failed trial. If your strategy doesn’t work today, ask yourself what adjustments could have made it better?” Don’t give up so easily and listen for any ideas that can give you the biggest bang for your buck.
Here are a few things you can ask the rep about advertising that can ease your worries about the strategy:
1. What is the “reach” of the ad? – they should be able to explain the distribution of the advertising by giving you a list of zip codes.
2. How will the magazine/newspaper be distributed?
3. Is there an online version and will you be included in that print?
4. Will Social Media be a part of the package and to what extent?
5. If it’s an online ad or a social media strategy, how often will they provide you with analytics?
I will share more “things to ask” on my next post. In the mean time, I hope that I have helped open your mind to invest more in Marketing and to not give up with one, two, or even three not-so-favorable results. For every failed strategy, you should build an adjusted plan that will get you closer to a result you are happy with. After all, it is a game of trial and error.
Thank you for posting my interview printing Korea (http://sparkah.com/printing/quote.html)
Originally posted on Insights of Sales Marketing Design Pros on Web and Printing:
Sweeney Mae | www.eventsinthecityla.com
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I am a Marketing Consultant and Event Producer. I help businesses create or improve branding strategy, Marketing efforts , social media, as well as plan launch events, grand openings, corporate events, fundraisers, and private parties.
What are the biggest changes you see happening in your industry?
Technology is the biggest factor of change in my industry. Reaching appropriate audience has been more accurate and accessible, nowadays.
What opportunities and challenges will these changes bring about?
The speed for which we see results are much faster, which is a great thing but at times lead to shorter patience.
What are your biggest goals?
My goals are to continue to build my fundraising events including THE SURVIVORS FASHION SHOW; Publish more books; speak and educate more business owners; and inspire the younger generation.
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Everyone is crazy about Beyonce’s new “thing” on Instagram called moving photos. It’s not enough that we take videos, now we take burst photos and use an app to make them look like a video. BUT it is an upcoming trend and soon you’ll see more celebrities indulging. I must admit it’s fun and eye catching so I hope you indulge too and let your followers watch your moving photos with “oooohhs and aaaahhhhs.”
I don’t want to give you too many choices but if you wanted to search for something you may like better than the choices below, just search for “Gif Maker” on both android or iphone.
What I currently have on my phones are:
* Android: Giff Me
* iPhone: Phhhoto
The vendors that are happy with their results are the ones who have managed to avoid most, if not all of the listed mistakes below.
The ones who complain about their results are usually those who fail to avoid at least 5 of the mistakes below.
1. You are too lazy to get up from your chair and stand in front of your table.
2. You failed to look your best.
3. You didn’t prepare a strategy to collect emails.
4. You failed to share the event on social media prior to the event.
5. Your staff aren’t asking the right questions to qualify potential clients.
6. You don’t have a portfolio of samples of your products or services.
7. You aren’t providing an enticing value exclusive for the event.
8. Your display isn’t well thought out.
9. You refused to take part in the event raffle, advertising on the program, etc…
10. You didn’t take advantage or engage of the social media following for the event or use the ‘hashtag’ to connect you to other vendors and participants.
So you’ve got a smart phone, a tablet/iPad, a Laptop, smart TV, and a smart Watch? It’s fun and convenient to have all of these technology as tools to communicate. Lucky for Marketing Professionals, it has now become easier than ever to quantify everything.
If you have a facebook page you can advertise to your select target market and receive analytics report. Mass e-mails provide a click-through report, and targeted ads now calculate CPMs (Cost Per Thousand (clicks)).
So here’s the kicker, market researchers are using your cell phones and WiFi connection to determine foot traffic. If you are in a theme park, for example, marketers can find out where you parked, what entrance you used, what rides you stood in line for, what rides you skipped, how much time you spent in the retail stores or the food court, and finally, if you are a return customer. Isn’t that amazing?
Oh wait, there’s more! The (example) theme park, can also track if you drove by their location and went to another theme park instead. Talk about “Big Brother?!?” – almost!
I notice so many people are against being “tracked” but unfortunately, because these tracking systems technically cannot access personal information, they are able to keep tracking. With that said, is technology going too far?
I usually blog about business, marketing, and events. Seldom will I share sentimental thoughts but I think this one can also be relative to all walks of life, not just in love. My comment was derived from the post realization that this video is a perfect example of believing in “grey areas.”
You shouldn’t give up on people especially when they need you the most. Some selfish minds may think “get out now, no kids, not married… no ties… just leave.” But those are advice from people who understand less the grey areas of life. Some things aren’t that simple. Will the sacrifices feel better if marriage and kids were in the picture? Do you need to say your vows first before you make ultimate sacrifices? If you can’t be there for the person you love now, then how can you expect a lifetime together? I think that the events prior to the vows are just as important. It’s not always about black and white. To think that you aren’t meant for each other because life got a little challenging is exactly the mentality that divorced couples suffer from.
Life got tough, let’s break up! We don’t feel the fire anymore let’s give up! You are not the man/woman I married, let’s give up! WRONG! When things aren’t the way you want them to be, you can either accept the change or change with it. I’m sure plenty of people are on the verge of giving up and their friends and family aren’t supporting “togetherness” because selfishly, whether people admit it or not, they hate to see victory. Stop advising separation and start advocating for togetherness. If you are the friend who gives the separation advice, let me ask you, will you be willing to really be there for your friend through thick and thin? Or perhaps only when she calls you because you have your own life, too? Don’t let your first advice be about separation. Be cognizant of the message you are sending… hold your friends hand and tell her to be strong and to be there for her spouse or other half. Support what the heart truly desires.
Marriage and kids need not come first for people to decide to make ultimate sacrifices for their other half. Perhaps, their love isn’t following your own chronological ideas of relationships but it’s still a valid relationship. Needless to say, I believe in the existence of grey areas.
How does this relate to business you ask? Let’s replace the idea of “spouse” in this blog with the idea of a “dream.” DON’T LET ANYONE TALK YOU OUT OF YOUR DREAMS! It’s your right to make the necessary sacrifices to accomplish the feeling of success the way you measure it.
Starting a business is the new black. It seems that there are one too many ENTREPRENEURS nowadays. Starting a business is sexy, to say the least. Being an entrepreneur means you are creative, you think well under pressure, you take risks, and most especially, you take ownership. There are plenty of small business owners who lack the entrepreneurship skills. Business owners who lack entrepreneurial skills refuse marketing planning, advertising strategy, and any other promotional investment.
If you’ve been contemplating on joining the entrepreneur community, here are 3 sure fire signs that you are ready to start your own business:
1. YOU ARE CONFIDENT ABOUT YOUR PASSION. Passion is an important element in the entrepreneurship equation. When things get very challenging, you have to have enough passion in what you do to continue your work and not give up.
2. YOU ARE READY TO SACRIFICE FUN FOR WORK. Yes, the ultimate goal is to live a life “boss-free” but the beginning stages wouldn’t necessarily seem that way. When you are first starting your business, it’s all about work and you’ll have to remind yourself to have play once in a while just to keep your (in) sanity.
3. YOU TRUST YOUR INSTINCT WHEN IT COMES TO TAKING RISKS. Unfortunately, running a business is all about instinct. Most of the time, there are no right or wrong choices, but you’ll definitely need a sound instinct to lean towards a choice that you know, without a doubt, will work best!
If you are a small business owner and don’t have any holiday sales promo or campaign then you are definitely behind! But don’t fret, I have a few last minute ideas that you can personalize and make your own but you must act FAST!
1. CREATE LOST LEADERS – simple but easier said than done. There are only a few days left before Christmas! If you don’t have a plan, then you must roll up your sleeves and start this last minute process by doing a little research. Who are the top players in your industry? What holiday gift deals are they offering? Start looking for examples online! Lucky for you, most things are now online.
A “lost leader” is a merchandise that you are willing to sell at or below cost just to get the people in the door! Offer it as a gift with purchase or a discounted purchase with purchase or a BOGO (Buy One Get One, free or half off). Whatever your offer is, make it a “too good to be true” promo AND offer it only at a limited time.
2. SUGGEST GIFT PACKAGE IDEAS – Have you heard of the term “out of site, out of mind?” Well, this also implies to retail. Shoppers are already very distracted, if you don’t feed them ideas for the perfect gift for him, her, or the kids, then you will be missing out on possible sales. Take some time to group complimentary items together and arrange it as a package deal.
3. OFFER REWARD POINTS – Reward customers who chose to buy from you. Allow your shoppers to redeem their points earned and encourage them to come and shop with you again after the holidays.
So, this video of Bill and John (yes, we are on first name basis) has gone viral because these two older white men discussed and argued about white privilege on national TV. Now, I don’t have a long blog about this but I simply want to pose the question: Where they sincerely indifferent or was this a plot to increase their “minority” viewership and popularity? Because now, as you can imagine, many Blacks and Asian Americans are sharing and arguing about this as well.
If you are a “fair-minded” person, I’m sure you can agree that everything they do is all about the ratings. Sad to say, we will never find out if they really meant what they said.