Monday, August 27, 2012

Tips and Tricks

Most people love feeling like insiders, part of an exclusive club that has exclusive privileges. Your customers will flock to be part of your exclusive club when you offer.

And in a combination of website, email, blogging, social marketing, and face to face events you can create and expand your brand's club and increase sales. And the best part is it costs very little to brand your business this way.

Create excitement for a new product with advance notice to your newsletter subscriber "club." After a couple of days you can announce it on your website, blog, and in social media. Invite participants to an in store event demonstrating the wonders of what your product can do for your customers and why they just can't live without it.

And your club members will be informed enough to tell their friends about your product and your business. And others will join your exclusive club. Everyone wants to belong.  

Monday, August 20, 2012

Creating Social Media Engagement--tell a story

There's much written about engaging customers on Facebook and other social media and every medium has its own quirks. Whether it's Facebook or Pinterest or another, one of the best posts tells a story and asks the customer to join in and contribute to the tale. One thing I've noticed is that customers who receive great service can't wait to tell about it.

Take the opportunity to solicit positive feedback without asking for it. Tell a story.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Search Engines---what you get when you Google it

What search engine do you use when you ask a question in your address bar and press enter? Chances are you barely notice if at all. And chances are, if you have a smart phone, you'll be using a different search engine than what you use on your laptop.

Each browser comes with its own default, too. So unless you've changed the defaults, if you're using IE you are probably searching with Bing, Chrome users will be using Google, and Firefox users will be defaulted to Google with a handy button near their address bar that allows them to select another engine with a drop down box that includes Yahoo, Babylon, and

Each search engine allows you to ask the same question and receive different answers back. If you're a small business owner with a website, you'd like to come up close to the top when a search is done for your product and the more local that search is the more likely that you will hit that mark. But the top is paid real estate in some search engines. And does it really pay to purchase the top spot when you're coming in second with a resounding customer recommendation to boot?

Most customers searching for a product such as yours are used to doing online research to help make their decisions. When you search do you go to the first ad and stop there to make your purchase? Probably not. It's the content on the pages attached to the search result that really matter in the long run. And in the long run, it is important that your business shows up upon a search for your product and that you've got spectacular content that proves to a potential customer that your business is the one for them.  

Monday, August 6, 2012

So You've Signed on to Pinterest---Now What to Pin?

Pinterest is made up of boards and pins. Boards are made up of pins. Pins are pictures accompanied by a very short amount of verbiage. Pinners will peruse pins and come across your posted Pin. If the picture captures imagination, interest, love, pinners will like the pin, comment on it, or even repin that pin back to their boards.

And so your pins go forward. So what do you pin? And how to arrange your pins?

Pins need to be knock out photos or graphics. The picture needs to tell the story---accompanying verbiage is only secondary. Let's say you're a small business retail establishment. You sell a product. You have sales and events that customers might be interested. Your business has a lot of happy customers. Your customers use your product and get great results.

These are the things you post:

  • A board with great pictures of your products linked back to your own website for additional information. Customers will repin back to their own boards for future reference.
  • A board with great graphics regarding special events and sales that also links back to more information. Customers will add to their boards or calendars and share to other potential customers. 
  • A board that shows your happy customers. Your happy customers will share with potential customers.
  • A board showing the results of using your product. Whether it is a garden from your garden center, a meal from your restaurant, or a great book from your bookstore, your product gets results---post them. They will be repinned and passed on. 
Make the pictures great. Keep the verbiage simple. And provide links back to additional information. Generating excitement about your small business couldn't be more simple.