business marketing tagged posts

How to define your business brand…

I love the process of creating a brand (and this is more than just a logo – watch this space for my next post) and for small businesses this often involves their entire business proposition and positioning.

So when I work with my clients, the majority of whom run small businesses, when we talk about brand, we are talking about their whole business, their offering, their target markets and how they can differentiate themselves from the competition and entice their target markets to spend their money with them.

Many small businesses will start marketing and promoting their small business without really thinking through what it actually is they are marketing and promoting and this often means they end up spending money on marketing that’s not working as well as it should for them – because th...

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IS content KING?

I read this great post last week called “60 Proven Ways to Increase Your Online Marketing Influence” on the Hubspot blog and I bookmarked it because I knew I would want to come back to it: 1) to refer to and remind myself of the ways mentioned and 2) because I realised it would be a good basis for a post of my own.

Out of the 60 ways included in the list, 12 of them (that’s 20%) mentioned directly or referred to “content” or “message”.

So IS content King?

Errr simply: YES. Without content you would have no blogs, no newsletters, no websites, no sales letters, no stream, no feed, no… anything. So yes it IS king, but only if you get it right.

Your content is the real vehicle for getting your business, message, brand and more out there – the ways you do it i.e...

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Social Media and Marketing: Using Your Head

During my usual weekly rummage through the delights of the Internet I came across this absolutely wonderful post by Frank Strong, the director of Public Relations at Vocus & PRWeb, a client of TopRank Online Marketing and featured on Top Rank Blog.com. It was called “7 Social Media Lessons from Mr. Miyagi in the Karate Kid”.

A well crafted, currently relevant (vis a vis Karate Kid 2010) and a fondly nostalgic blog post, it really summed up the best way to approach social media and the ways I myself try to approach it. However, out of all the words of Miyagi wisdom “using head for something other than target” hit home the most for me as I see this applying to all forms of marketing and promotion, not just social media.

The biggest mistake businesses make in marketing is trying to sell.

Mar...

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Authentic Networking finally takes shape

You may remember (or may not as it has been a while since I updated this blog – just blame the fact of being Just Too Busy!) that I did a post on how to make networking work for your business. If you don’t remember, and I won’t blame you if you don’t, then here is the full article from last November : “Networking: How to make it work for your business”.

Well, I am delighted to say that the authentic networking I mentioned in that article has now taken shape as an actual, real-live event: the new Authentic Networking group for small businesses based in Horsham, Worthing and everywhere in between.

Now in the context of a potentially (if not actually) global blog, that probably doesn’t sound like much. But for me it is a personal achievement that I have been wanting to do for some time.

I am ...

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Quick-Start, Kick-Start Marketing Checklist

How to quick-start, kick-start your marketing….

If you know you should be doing marketing for your business but aren’t getting round to it then here are a few ideas to get your marketing off the ground, quickly:

  1. Find ONE networking group in your area and go along as a guest – more groups will let you participate as a member and you can meet new people quickly and easily without spending a fortune. It will also give you the opportunity to see if you might even want to join that networking group. If, however, you don’t think it’s for you then you haven’t spent a fortune to find this out.
  2. Sort out your email signature – if this doesn’t have – at the very least – your website address and your phone number in it – along with your logo, then you are wasting a FREE marketing opportunity every si...
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Internet Marketing versus ‘real’ marketing – a RANT!

Yes I am having a rant!

Very simply, it really frustrates me to see “Internet Marketing” being touted as the answer to a small business’s marketing dreams. I come across so many instances of pure marketing being substituted with Internet marketing that I wonder if anyone who reads that information will ever move beyond the IM holy grail of building a list, selling online products and holding teleseminars and workshops (oh and don’t forget the flagship product of exclusive one-to-one coaching.)

So yes I am having a rant about how Internet marketing is portrayed and then perceived by its intended audience. What do I mean?

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Marketing Basics: Article Writing & Submission

Spreading the word – proving your expertise!

Article writing and its online distribution is an excellent, low-cost way to market your business and it achieves a number of very positive things for your business and your profile. It:

  • Establishes your knowledge and expertise on your chosen topic
  • Enables you to communicate with your target market (and more) on any topic of your choice (of course it should be relevant to them)
  • Provides a forum via your author biography or article resource box for you to ‘brazenly’ promote your business (in conjunction with the expertise piece this works really well)
  • Creates inbound links to drive people to your website or blog (as long as you remember to include the URL in your bio or resource box!)
  • Raises your profile and adds to your credibility as an expert
  • Gives your target market the opportunity to learn more about your field of expertise (and your business) in a non-sales way
  • Has a positive impact on your website’s page ranking and SEO results rankings
  • Provides you with a range of information that you can leverage in a number of other ways such as using the information for a newsletter, a blog post, put it on your website, use in a presentation, part of an ebook or series and more….

So you can see that just by writing one article and submitting it online the results of that can be impressive. Of course, the more articles you write the better and more impressive the results will be. It won’t work just to submit one article – but it is a start!

And that’s where most people STOP!

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Networking – how to make it work for your business

This post covers what I think is one of the most effective ways of generating leads for your business: Networking – the traditional face to face type.

As most networking groups wind down for the Christmas break, now is the perfect time to look at what your networking strategy is going to be for the New Year. And by strategy I simply mean how are you going to be using networking to promote your business?

Networking is Marketing

If you aren’t doing any networking as yet for your business, it is certainly something you should be thinking about. Networking is a very useful marketing strategy. To get the most out of your networking, however, you need to consider the following:

1. Networking is a long-term strategy. You may think that if after your first networking meeting you don’t walk away wi...

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Marketing Basics: Save money on your marketing

Use joint ventures to cut your marketing budget in half and double your list…

Cutting your marketing budget in halfSmall businesses are always looking for ways to save money – especially right now. Joint venture marketing is a perfect way to do this. You share the costs and you share the list.

And it’s EASY!

So in this installment of the Marketing Basics: 17 Ways to Generate Leads for your Business, I am going to give you some ideas on how you can generate leads for your business while keeping your costs down using joint venture marketing.

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Taking the “SHOULD” out of your marketing

How to break free of the marketing activities
that everyone else says you should be doing!

Woman with lots of stickies

As a small business owner, responsible for pretty much everything from running the finances, to making the tea, from organising your diary to doing the marketing, have you ever felt overwhelmed by all the different marketing activities you think you should be doing – because everyone else is?

I know I have done in the past!

I have spoken to three people in the last week or so where the topic of conversation was just this: what marketing should I be doing and how do I know it’s the right thing?

With more and more ways to communicate with your target market, it seems that the choices for marketing activity is just growing. The explosion of social media has just compounded this. For example some people say that to be effective in your marketing you SHOULD be doing a monthly email newsletter, a weekly or daily blog, Twittering like crazy and regular online networking etc.

WRONG! Your marketing, your specific marketing for your specific small business, is just that: specific. Just because other people are doing those things, doesn’t mean you have to or SHOULD.

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