Social Media Marketing For Small Business Entrepreneurs

I was thinking the other day why I have enjoyed consulting with small business owners for so many years. Talk about reality shows. What is more real than talking to the person who created, owns and operates a business? They have made their dream a reality. It’s a whole different conversation and level of engagement from talking to a marketing or business development manager working for a small or mid-size company. I don’t mean to imply that the marketing or business development manager knows less about the company’s business than the owner. It’s about the level of passion for the business. Passion or entrepreneurial zeal, as we know, doesn’t always translate into being able to run a company successfully but I love to hear their story.

I enjoy the initial phase of a search engine optimization or pay per click management campaign for any new client. We call this the discovery phase where we gather quantitative and qualitative information about a business to lay the groundwork for the project. The more we know about what they do, how they do it, who they are trying to reach and what their goals are the better we can develop and implement a successful online marketing strategy for them.

One big difference I notice almost immediately when talking to an entrepreneur is the desire to talk about their business. You never have to worry about keeping the conversation going that’s for sure. Entrepreneurs love to talk about their business. It’s their passion. That’s why they are doing it. Many businesses, if not most, are built based on the personality of the owner and more often than naught these owners have an outgoing, engaging personality. That is why social media marketing can be so powerful for small business owners.

Social media marketing is not just about creating profiles on facebook, myspace, LinkedIn and other social media networks to try to create buzz and links to your web site. It’s about being actively engaged in the networks. Let people get to know you. Be real. Tell them about your business, why you do it and how you do it. Not from a sales and marketing stand point so it sounds like every other Tom, Dick and Harry selling the same thing but from your personal stand point – your personality – let it shine through. Just a warning here, if you are a real drone with a negative view point on the world this might not work. :>) Find people with the same interests as yours and participate in their discussions. It has to be a two way network for it to work best.

Are you thinking how in the heck am I supposed to find enough time to do this plus run my business? This is a valid point but if done correctly this can reap big benefits for your business. Millions and millions of people are participating in social media networks every day. Instead of actively participating in 4 or 5 determine which one best fits your desired demographic and focus predominantly on that one. Also, you might really enjoy it. Just talk about your favorite topic – your business.

Habits of Highly Successful Businesses

One of the greatest secrets of successful people is their pattern of behavior. A little study of successful people will reveal that there are certain habits, patterns, regular or repetitive and predictable behaviors.

Just as successful people are men and women of habits, certain habits are also common with successful businesses.

Highly effective and prosperous business organizations have great relevance and impact on people because they have developed habits.

What is habit? Habit is an action or pattern of behavior that is repeated so often that it becomes typical of somebody, although he or she may be unaware of it; somebody’s attitude or general disposition.

Every business has several habits, but not all repeated behaviours are of equal value. Some habits are detrimental and pernicious. For instance, someone having a drug habit (the repeated use of harmful drugs).

Most businesses have a number of harmful and unfortunate habits. To avoid creating and engaging bad habits, we must be very conscious of what we do, when we do it, why we do it and the outcome of those actions.There are habits that are harmful to businesses. When you engage any of these habits, to experience progress in such a business becomes almost impossible. Some of these harmful habits can ultimately destroy your business.

There are four elements that make habits desirable:

Intentional behavior: Unintentional business activity is not worth doing unless we can justify its implementations. All business efforts should be intentional and well directed toward the actualization of the goal and vision of the organization.

Strategic behavior: A habit becomes strategic when it is done purposefully and in relation to a specified desirable outcome. All habits should be consistent with the vision and purpose of the business organization.

Productive behavior: A habit is productive if it moves us closer to our business goal. Every habit that is not productive is counterproductive and therefore bad for the business.

Biblical behavior: It is possible for habits to be intentional, strategic and productive but to be outside the boundaries of Scriptures. Every habit must align with the principles of God’s word.

Successful businesses have numerous habits, but these habits are intentional, strategic, productive and Biblical. Here are some habits of highly successful business organizations:

Operate in large markets: Successful businesses operate in large and growing markets. The number of people that will need your product will determine how many sales you’ll make. It is wisdom to operate in large market.

Have unique products: Businesses that are making impact in the market place don’t go around marketing “me too” products. Their products are unique.

Have systems: Successful business organizations are known for their great systems. They have great structures in place.

Customer service: The real battle in the business arena is the battle for customer. As never before customers are surrounded with dozens or alternatives to choose from. Organizations that please customer well have upper hands in this battle for customer.

Not dependent on one person: Great businesses are not built around a person or personality. And this is one of the importances of running the business on solid systems.

Have great marketing: Every business thrives on good marketing. Successful business organizations know the importance of marketing. As a result, they invest money and time in their marketing.

They add value to customers: the number one goal of every business organization is to win and keep customers. Not really about making profits. Making profits might be the entrepreneur’s goal. But the business organization as an entity has one major goal, and that is to attract and keep customers. And key to achieving that is by adding value to their customer. So that, the customers can keep coming back. And also to refer their friends and neighbors.

They come up with new products: Successful business organizations don’t rest on their successes. They know that the success of yesterday will stink today. It is said that every product has shelf life of six months before becoming obsolete.

They have a big customer database: successful businesses keep good customer database. They know the importance of their customers. They keep good records of the customers.

They have high margins. Because their products are unique and they operate in large market. They have high margins. They can afford to raise the prices of their products without the fear of losing customers.

Take a few minutes to identify some of the many habits that define your business. Let’s meet in the comments!

To Your Prosperity

Sharon akinoluwa

How To Simplify Your Business With Direct Email Marketing Software

Email marketing is in demand these days. People use this essential marketing tool proficiently to promote their business or products. Furthermore, email marketing services could be used to retain your customers and attract new ones. If you have just started your business even then you need to add e-mail marketing tool in your tool kit to promote your business and products to get sales leads.

On the other hand, sending mass email could be a problem if you do not use direct email advertising software. If you are using free web-based email accounts to run your promotional campaign then just think how many efforts you need to put in to send customized emails to your target customers. And, if you use “send to various” option or you send e-mails to your mailing lists then there are many chances that your customer either does not unfold your mail or the server of internet service provider blacklist your email address.

Therefore, to run an email campaign successfully, you must use professional email marketing services or direct email marketing software. There are different mass email software companies available in market on the internet. Even some websites permit you to send mass e-mails via their gateway and some of them facilitate you to send your emails or run e-mail marketing campaign through your desktop and even from your personal website gateway.

However, due to improved security by the ISPs many emails do not pass through their email filters and, hence end up in junk folders. In this type of case your marketing campaign can just go waste. You spend a lot of money on running your campaign and in return you will get nothing. To avoid these conditions, you should only pay money for trusted and reputed e-mail software.

So, here are the points to remember before selecting direct email marketing software:

1. Only get software from a reputed email marketing company because your campaign is a very necessary investment to carry you tremendous sales leads and therefore, you must not compromise on the marketing software. It must give you easy to use interface to manage your customer’s contact details, mailing list, automatic and customized replies to the e-mail queries. Buying this kind software is definitely a better investment.

2. Use personalized e-mailing services because some businesses use collective or reseller versions of these services to save the charges acquired. No doubt this type of service offer you economic email advertising medium, but they produce a negative effect on your intended audience. So, you must purchase independent email software for successful results and full control.

3. Use highly developed software according to your needs because there is a lot of software available in market, but you should perform some research and buy the one that matches to your needs. Advanced software permits you to articulate email campaigns and different information program. They work the best to personalize your campaigns for your customers and target audience.

Therefore, using services of reputable email marketing company for sending emails, it is likely to run an efficient marketing campaign through the online resource of communication. Start-up businesses which have no reputation in the market should make use of this service. Email service will help them accomplish a larger part of the demographics, so that they are able to generate awareness about their product or services in the brains of the customers.

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