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What Kind of Marketing is Right For Your Business?

Do you know what kind of marketing you should be doing based on your business model, goals and culture?

It’s definitely not an easy question; in fact, it stumps many business owners.  For instance, should you be engaging in online social marketing?  (Chances are good the answer is yes, by the way… although you may have to vary the frequency, locations, etc.)  Should you add print marketing?  How about radio/television marketing?  What about grassroots marketing or guerilla marketing?

If you’re not certain what kind of marketing to choose, it’s time to begin putting together a comprehensive strategy.  And if you don’t have a marketing plan, we suggest you avoid doing any marketing until you know which method is going to work best for your organization’s needs.

And, as always, if you’d like to learn more about how marketing can work for you, contact us.  We’d love to help you bring your ideas to life with great marketing tactics!

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In Marketing, Timing Often Trumps Perfection

As an entrepreneur or business owner, have you ever missed the boat when it came to marketing?  You sent out a flyer too late… you waited too long to initiate a sale… you didn’t allow yourself to think outside the box until your competitor beat you to it…  The list goes on and on.

We see this frequently.  It’s the Perfection Syndrome and it can bring a company’s marketing to its knees.

Business people allow themselves to lose inertia and become paralyzed by the idea that if their marketing plans are flawed — even minutely — they cannot move forward.

We’re here to tell you that, more often than not, timing trumps perfection.

We’ve seen a lot of sub-par marketing efforts do tremendously well because they were well-timed.  We’ve also seen terrific marketing efforts tank because the timing was off.

Now, we’re not suggesting that you slap something together just to take advantage of a great moment, but it is important not to allow yourself to fall into a pattern of waiting too long.  Not only will your morale suffer if you do, but your bottom line won’t look so good, either.  And no one wants that!

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9 Ways to Make the Most of Your Internet Presence

Be honest with yourself – are you really making the most of your Internet presence?  If you’re like most companies, you know that there are opportunities you’re missing practically every day.

That’s why we’ve developed this list of 9 ways to make the most out of your Internet presence.  Try some (or all!) for the impact you need.

  1. Create a blog and keep it updated at least three times a week.  Remember:  Unique content with SEO flair sells!
  2. Send out an e-newsletter to your prospects and clients.  Choose a regular interval that you know you can commit to, such as once a week, biweekly, monthly or quarterly.
  3. Launch video campaigns.  Videos have the power to reach through the Internet and make a strong impression.  So why not use them in your business?
  4. Join the social networking revolution!  If you’re not on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and other social networking sites, you’re missing out!
  5. Try pay-per-click (and similar) advertising.  Believe it or not, it can be a fast and reliable way to garner new clientele or generate warm/hot leads.
  6. Create landing pages specific to different audiences.  Afterwards, track them for a powerful way to evaluate how well your marketing strategy is working.
  7. Offer other businesses the opportunity to become your company’s affiliate.  It’s like having a sales force that’s working for you 24/7!
  8. Think of your website as a resource.  Add articles, news items, fact sheets and case studies so it’s more than just a sales tool.
  9. Start following other people’s blogs, sites, social networking posts, etc.  This will begin a “thread” that leads back to you… and may generate interest!

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FACEBOOK – What It Is, What It Isn’t

Once the realm of teens and young people to catch up with each other, Facebook has taken off beyond anyone’s expectations… except perhaps the founder of FB, Mark Zuckerberg.  Once businesses and professionals realized the power of the social media marketing networking tool, it really caught fire.

Today, there are 600+ million users on Facebook, some much more active than others.  And that makes it an attractive social media marketing locale for companies of all sizes.

The inherent problem, of course, is that like all social media marketing platforms, Facebook isn’t necessarily the end-all, be-all.  Sure, there are 600+ million people out there using it, but that doesn’t mean they’ll ever cross your path.  Nor does it mean that you will get them to “like” your business.

Facebook users are highly selective about which organizations’ pages they will “like”.  After all, by “liking” something, they’re essentially telling their FB friends, “Hey, I support this company and what it offers.”  This is the reason that, for many companies, it can be tough to get even 100 followers.

Another issue with FB as a social media marketing tool is that you have to have uber-creative, compelling content.  It’s not enough to talk about yourself or your business all the time; you have to give FB users a reason to keep coming back.  And that takes some serious marketing savvy.

So how do you overcome these problems?  Try the following ways as starting points:

1.  Have a plan:  Using Facebook for your social media marketing in a vacuum or “once in a while” just won’t work.  So you have to develop a plan for how you’re going to use it.

2.  Write Awesome Content:  If that’s not your forte, find someone who CAN write for FB.  Yes, you’ll pay to outsource this task, but if you choose well, your investment will pay for itself.

3.  Spread the Love:  Don’t make your FB page too self-congratulatory or self-absorbed.  If you’re only talking about you, you, you (or your business), it won’t be enough to get people to “like” your page.

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12 Reasons Why You Need A Business Plan

Inexperienced or foolish businesspeople will argue that their marketplace changes too abruptly for a business plan to be useful. But shrewd entrepreneurs will exclaim that’s simply not true!

Click here to get a break-down of 12 reasons why you need a business plan.

A business plan is an essential element of a successful business and sets the plan in motion so you may become a thriving entrepreneur.

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What Does Your Company Name Say About You?

Names can potentially tell us a lot about people.  They can tell us which TV shows a person’s mom and dad watched; they can give us a hint as to the decade in which the person grew up; and they can sometimes even provide clues as to the ethnic origins of the individual.

Company names can be similarly revealing.  They can deliberately (or unwittingly) give customers clues as to the organization’s heritage and direction.  Unfortunately, business names can also sometimes be misleading.  That’s why it’s so critical to choose a name wisely.

Whether you’re looking to create a new company or you want to essentially rebrand an existing one, it’s imperative to get help from a trained marketing professional.  He or she will be able to walk you through the scenarios regarding what your business’ possible names could “say” to the public.

For example, let’s suggest you want to open a coffee shop that serves quick, hot beverages to coffee freaks.  How about “Expresso” (a blend of the words “express” and “espresso”)?  Or perhaps “Caffiend” (caffeine + fiend).  Either of those could be contenders.  What you wouldn’t want to call your place is “Ye Olde Coffee Shoppe”; after all, a generic name like that one doesn’t necessarily give much info.

As a business owner, you must be very, very prudent about your moniker choices.  Even if you have to invest in working with a marketing agency, it’s worth every penny to know that your name will be telling consumers everything they need to know.

Now here’s a question for you:  What’s the worst company name you’ve ever heard?

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Is Your Brand Bland?

Every business has a brand… even the ones that never officially “branded” themselves.  Brands can be big, they can be bold, they can be crazy, they can be fun… and they can also be dull as butter knives.  Guess which category most companies’ brands fall under?

Yep, the majority of brands are pretty doggone bland.  That’s usually because of a number of reasons, including:

  1. The brand was never created in the first place.  It just kind of “happened”.
  2. The brand was once strong but has ceased to be effective.
  3. The brand isn’t being used company wide, thus leading to inconsistencies and market confusion.
  4. The brand doesn’t make sense for the product/service/organization.

Obviously, you don’t want your brand to be forgettable.  You want it to jump off the proverbial page and really spur people into action.  But that doesn’t happen by accident.

You have to be willing to create a strategy behind your brand and how you’ll use it to make a profit and achieve professional success.

Ask yourself if your brand is strong… better yet, ask some other people who will give you honest feedback.  If the answer is “no”, give us a call. Working together, we’ll turn your brand from boring to brilliant.

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10 Marketing Mistakes You Cannot Afford to Make, part I

Too many companies have made these marketing mistakes over the years… so there’s no reason that you should experience the pain of these types of errors!  Read over this list and repeat to yourself:  “I will NEVER do these!”

Marketing Mistake #1:  Not having a plan: This is a huge problem and one we see all the time.  Not having a marketing plan is like not having a map to a destination you’ve never seen before.  You know where you’re going but have no clue how to get there.  Think you’ll get lost?  We do.

Marketing Mistake #2:  Spending money on the wrong things:  It’s easy to get caught up in all the excitement when someone tells you that you HAVE to get involved in one type of marketing or another.  But if you’re just constantly throwing money at marketing schemes that never seem to work… you basically are burning your cash.

Marketing Mistake #3:  Not spending enough money on the right things:  Just as some businesses spend too much money on things they don’t need, there are many businesses that will not spend enough on the marketing things that could help them.  If you’re a cheapskate, you may just find yourself looking for a job in the future instead of hiring others.

Marketing Mistake #4:  Trying to do it all:  You may not need a Twitter account.  You might not see a dime from a billboard campaign.  And radio?  Perhaps it’s not the best marketing tool for your company’s needs.  If you try to do it all, you’ll probably realize all-too-late that there were elements that could – and should – have been avoided.

Marketing Mistake #5:  Not listening to your audience: If your customer base hates your marketing methods, it’s not their fault that they “just don’t get it”… it’s your fault for not listening to them.  You really need to make sure that you are always keeping your clients in mind when determining what kinds of marketing to use.

Later this week, we’ll look at Marketing Mistakes #6-10…

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The Reputed Demise of Direct Mail Campaigns Has Been Highly Premature

“Don’t bother with direct mail!  It’s all Internet now!  No one will ever read something that comes in the mail!”

It’s a quaint notion, but it’s far from the truth.  In all actuality, direct mail campaigns still do very well… as long as they are strategically developed.

In order to ensure that direct mail marketing works, a few items have to be in place:

  1. The copywriting has to sing! If it just whispers… forget it.
  2. The list has to be appropriate. If you’re trying to get into the hearts and minds of family doctors and your direct mail piece goes out to insurance agents, you’re sunk.
  3. The list has to be scrubbed. A scrubbed list is one that has been checked and rechecked.
  4. The list you use should be from a reputable direct mail source. There are plenty of fly-by-night operations out there, and they’ll be happy to take your hard-earned dollars.  If you want your marketing to work, don’t give in to their flash and promises.

Fortunately, you’re in luck because Einstein Marketing Group specializes in working with clients on their direct mail campaigns and options.  Just connect with us and we’ll help you design direct mail that provides value and gets results!

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