Every piece of marketing begins and ends with content. I cannot stress enough how important it is to spend your time and resources to produce good content. If your content is terrible or built for the entirely wrong audience your ad spend is focused on, you have completely wasted your time, energy, and resources. Hear me. You must get this part of the process right if you want anything downstream to succeed.
Maybe you’re not sure how your content rates. If you do your marketing in-house, please get a professional opinion. This doesn’t always have to cost a lot of money. Take advantage of your network. It can be as simple as buying that professional marketing friend of a friend lunch to pick their brain and show them a few of your pieces. It is imperative that you are actively auditing your content and more importantly, correctly serving the proper marketing content to the proper audience on the proper platform. Here are a few simple steps you can take to be sure you avoid common content marketing mistakes.
Smart marketing tips and tricks can save a small business’s life. You don’t have to be a millionaire to do it well, you just need to make sure that whatever you can do is the best that you can make it. Remember that Arthur Ashe quote?
“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”
Don’t focus on everything you can’t do. Focus on what you can do. Not everyone has a big marketing budget, so here are some smart marketing tips and tricks to make the most out of what you have.
As a small business owner, you may often find yourself debating the subject of marketing yourself vs. using a marketing agency. In order to hire an agency, you must be willing to set aside some budget for them to work with. Nothing is more frustrating for you or the agency than to, after a series of meetings, come to the conclusion that they are being asked to get paid for their work and results and you are not willing to pay it.
A few thousand dollars a month can do you a world of good when taking advantage of an agency’s expertise, but that budget line can sting when you’ve never committed those kinds of funds to your marketing before. You could continue to make use of that college intern for practically no dollars, but are you really getting anything out of it? Are the marketing tactics you are currently utilizing on your own still the best tactics in today’s ever changing world? Consider the points below to see if marketing yourself vs us a marketing agency still makes sense for your business.
Some people and companies have not come to the understanding that they can use a LinkedIn profile to generate leads. LinkedIn isn’t just a social platform. It is a tool. If you manage to craft your profile and content correctly, LinkedIn can be a powerful sales tool, but you have to do it right. With over 575 million profiles on the platform, you want to be sure you stand out – in the right ways. This can be done by following a few simple rules. Be clear and concise. Make others aware of what you can do for them. What value props can you provide? Don’t use 7 words when 3 will do. State your abilities succinctly and humbly and don’t babble on and on. Short and sweet as they say. You want people to be able to glance at your profile, quickly comprehend who you are, who you work for, and what you can do. Be professional. This is the first impression you make, so don’t be too casual about it. Take a look at the graphic below to get your LinkedIn profile to generate leads and boost your sales and network numbers.
Does your branding need a bit of a refresh? The simplest way that makes an extraordinary difference is updating your font. Did you know 90% of design is in typography? The font not only communicates the basic, cold hard facts and information of your business, but it also expresses the feeling or personality of your business – or can – if done properly. Think of Coca-Cola with its flowing old-time script depicting its history and old reliable essence or Google with its colorful simple script communicating a simplistic yet creative understanding. There is more to typography than meets the eye. It meets the heart – if used properly. Never forget how much it can communicate or forget that people, more and more, choose brands they personally connect with. Choose wisely. Be intentional. Tell your story.
Fear can be paralyzing. Entrepreneurship is inherently risky, and there’s no guarantee that your business will be successful. However, you can overcome fear by reducing some of the risk with these tips.
1. Test Your Business Idea
Before betting everything on your business, try to test your business ideaby starting it as a side hustle. This way, you can test the waters without quitting your day job.
There are a few steps you can take before starting a side hustle:
Create a business plan. A business plan helps you validate your idea and figure out the logistics of starting your business. Write down your business goals, target market, and how you plan to make money. This will give you a roadmap to follow as you start your business.
Outline a marketing plan. Marketing is essential for any business, and you need to figure out how you’ll reach your target market. Write down the marketing channels you’ll use, what kind of content you’ll create, and how you’ll measure your success.
Set up a sales funnel. A sales funnel is the process that your business uses to convert leads into customers. Adding a payment system, such as Paypal or Stripe, to your business website makes it easy to accept payments online.
Start small and grow organically. Finally, doing too much too soon is a recipe for disaster, especially if you’re still working a 9-to-5. Start with a small group of customers and then scale as you gain more traction.
2. Register Your Business
Another way to mitigate the fear of starting a business is by taking the necessary legal steps to protect yourself. Registering your business gives you a level of legitimacy.
If you’re starting a business in the United States, you need to register it with the federal government and your state government. There are four main types of business structures in the US: sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, so choose the one that’s right for your business.
3. Invest in Marketing
In the digital age, there are a number of ways to market your business online, but some of the most effective are search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, multichannel and social media marketing.
When it comes to digital marketing, the most important thing is to focus on your audience. Who are you trying to reach? What do they want? Once you know the answers to these questions, you can create content that resonates with them and gets them to take action.
4. Stay on Top of Your Finances
As a new business owner, you’ll likely have an eagle eye on everything you spend. However, over time, it’s easy to become lax with this. Unfortunately, a lack of financial knowhow can be one of the main reasons for a business’s downfall; don’t let this happen to you.
The best way to maintain a strong grasp of your financials is to implement accounting software that makes it simple to manage the financial aspects. Look for a product that automatically tracks your income, expenses and job costs, as well as invoicing, inventory management and tax filing.
Take the First Step
The hardest part of starting a business is often taking that first step. Once you’ve done your research and made a plan, it’s time to take action. The sooner you get started, the sooner you’ll be on your way to success.
So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and start building your dream business.
This guest blog has been provided by Jeremy Zielie of straightnorth.com. Thank you Jeremy for your insight.
Recurring revenue streams can help strengthen customer loyalty and increase profit at your business. A report found that all new software entrants and 80% of historical vendors are offering a subscription-based pricing model. While some industries may be better suited toward recurring revenue like SaaS, there are still ways to create a recurring revenue model for physical products. For example, organizations can offer a membership-based program for exclusive products or create a subscription box for loyal customers. If you are interested in learning a few more recurring revenue ideas, check out the accompanying resource below.
Did you know there are 6 easy ways to improve your LinkedIn lead generation strategy? Just a few simple steps can take you from zero to hero on this booming platform. LinkedIn, at its most basic level, is designed to connect, build, and strengthen relationships in the world of professionals. It is an incredibly valuable tool that allows you to seek and make connections to not only grow your network but to also build, cultivate, and establish your brand and value to others – if utilized correctly. Check out these 6 easy tips to make sure you are making the most out of the platform and improve your LinkedIn lead generation strategy.
Have you ever thought about the neuroscience of storytelling? I’m guessing most people haven’t but knowing the how and why behind branding through storytelling is more interesting and scientific than I ever thought possible. Our brains are wired to latch on and remember stories more than anything else. Neuroactivity abounds when we hear a story because they are built to touch so many different centers of our brain from emotional and language regions to sensory regions like sight and smell. Stories engulf their listeners in a narrative they can’t peel away from – if it’s a good story, told well. Telling your brand story is your company’s opportunity to captivate an audience. Take advantage of the neuroscience of storytelling and make sure you find a unique place in the memory of your audience. Take the time to craft and turn over different lines and points of emphasis. The better-told story is the most remembered.
Spring is in the air, and with longer days and warmer temperatures, 2022 consumer shopping trends are emerging! Different people deal with the winter doldrums in different ways, but 44% of people say they shop when there is nothing else to do. Although we’ve seen a huge uptick in inflation, consumers seem unwilling to change any of their purchasing habits even if it means buying on credit to make ends meet. Although, some shoppers are finding creative ways to manage the latest cost of goods. With the pandemic having changed so much of the broader consumer shopping habits over the last two years, businesses are scrambling to put themselves in front of as many as many people as possible to be sure they get their fair share of the profit. Check out the infographic below to see the consumer shopping trends for 2022.