Question: Brandi, I go to a lot of networking events each week and I get stuck in the same old “what do you do?” conversation. My business is service based and offers a variety of different services depending on the customers needs. How do I tailor my message so that it reaches the potential client and gets them to be interested without giving them too much information and overwhelming them? Read more!
Networking is often a key part of a small business owners marketing mix. A lot of time goes into choosing which events to attend and perfecting our pitch. But, the importance of follow up is often forgotten. In fact, 48% of people never follow up, below are the key do’s and don’ts of networking follow up and why you should care. Read more!
Question: How do you re-brand your business from faith based to a general non-religious business?
At its core, this question seeks advice on how to make a shift in a small business. As we learn and grow as small business owners we often discover new things about our target audience, our industry, and ourselves. These new discoveries often take us in new directions. When you need to make a shift in your business you must first re-evaluate and then revise. Watch the video below for my full response to this question. Read more!
The Super Bowl is about more than just the game, it’s a time to gather with friends and family to watch the game, fellowship, and mourn the end of the NFL season. It is also all about the commercials and the half-time show. Advertisers spend millions, and devote their most creative resources to coming up with the absolute perfect Super Bowl ad. The price tag on ads hit a new high this year, CBS charged between $3.8 million and $4 million for every spot shown during the game. Today, it is likely that more people will be discussing their favorite commercials than the outcome of the game. One example is YouTube prompting visitors to vote for their favorite.
I am a member of Sugarloafer’s Toastmasters. For those not familiar with Toastmasters, Toastmasters International is a world leader in communication and leadership development. There are more than 280,000 members of Toastmasters. These members improve their speaking and leadership skills by attending one of the 13,500 clubs in 116 countries that make up the global network of meeting locations.
For me, Toastmasters is a way for me to consistently hone my speaking skills. With each speech I receive constructive feedback on both my delivery and the content. As I work through the advanced manuals I most often develop content related to my area of expertise (marketing, sales, and business strategy).
I’m currently working through the Specialty Speeches manual and the first speech was an impromptu speech. My Type-A personality dislikes not being able to prepare to speak so this presentation was a great way for me to get in some practice. The manual required that I provide my evaluator with 5 topics and they would choose which I was speaking on right before my speech. The topic that was chosen “The 3 Reasons You Should be Blogging for Your Small Business.” Read more!
A Perth, Australia, teenager Matt Corby posted an image of a less-than-a-foot-long Subway Footlong. The image that circulated around the web last week showed a Subway FOOTLONG® measuring only 11”. The article posted on BuzzFeed.com suggests that legal action could be possible for false advertising; I will leave the legalities of the less-than-a-foot-long sandwich to the legal people. But the lesson that I take away from this situation is the importance of delivering on promises that you make to your customers.
Question: Brandi, I have an idea for a tool that I think is great (of course), useful, and needed. Where do I find info on regulations for my specific type of product? How do I get from prototype to sales? I know that’s a long path. Thanks in advance! Read more!
Today we celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. On August 29, 1963 Dr. King delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. The 17-minute public speech called for an end to racism in the United States. The speech, delivered to over 200,000 civil rights supporters from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington, was a defining moment of the American Civil Rights Movement.1 At the end of the speech Dr. King departed from his prepared text to deliver the most memorable portion of the address. Read more!
Imagine going over to your local electronics store, purchasing a marketing GPS, plugging in your target audience and having it navigate your marketing so that every one of your efforts reached your ideal customer at the exact right time with a message that moved their wallets to open up to make an immediate purchase. That would be small business utopia wouldn’t it? Your bank account would be overflowing and you would be making expansion plans rather than scratching your head trying to figure out what to do next. Read more!
Brandi, I have been working on my website for what feels like forever. The countdown to the launch ended more than two months ago because I’m stuck. I have chosen my theme, I have my logo and colors, and I know what needs to go on the site but I’m struggling to get the content written. What’s crazy is I just completed my educational program and my school provides a website template for us. Although, I don’t want to use it because it is cookie cutter it is at least a starting point. I know how important my site is, where do I start? I really need to get this done so that my business can move forward.
Thank you for your question, website copy can be a challenge for a lot of small business owners. Here are my top 3 tips to getting started with the copy. Read more!
You Have Questions, I have Answers!
Happy New Year! We are 10 days into the New Year and I’m excited about what the future holds. I took the holiday off to relax and re-cooperate and plan for an amazing 2013. I am always looking for new ways to be a resource to you so I am excited to announce the launch of the Ask a Marketing Maven video series. Whether via email, Facebook, or text message I am always asked marketing, sales, and business strategy questions. So you now have the opportunity to ask me your questions and receive feedback and tips in the form of videos. Read more!
Startups and growing businesses in the one to five year range normally have their own set of challenges to contend with. Here are a few simple but powerful tips to grow and sustain a small business.
1. Setting Smart Goals
Goals are the invisible force that can keep a business moving forward relentlessly. Without goals, a business would lose perspective and motivation. By setting the right goals, a business can be given laser sharp focus, which would then move it closer to achieving that goal every single day. However, it is important to set the right goals. The goals would have to perfectly align with the vision of the organization. The goals should also be achievable and realistic. Unrealistic goals, how much ever noble they are, can discourage employees and instill a sense of defeat. Read more!
As an entrepreneur we wear many hats and are stretched thin daily in addition to family and other outside commitments. Often we find ourselves spending too much time working IN our business as opposed to working ON is.
Administrative tasks and client projects are examples the day to day tasks that keep us working in our business. However, generating new business and taking steps to meet your business goals is what will allow your business to thrive and flourish.
In order to free up some of your time to work on your business you need to outsources some of the day to day. Outsourcing doesn’t have to be costly; there are resources available that can help. Here are a few tips to outsource without breaking the bank. Read more!
Increasing your website conversion percentage is one of the most significant things that you can do to drive revenue in your small business. Your small businesses website should not just be an online brochure; in fact it should be the hub of all of your marketing efforts and lead to revenue.
So what is conversion? By definition website conversion is the percentage of visitors who take a desired action. Those actions could include completing a form, purchasing a product or service, download something, signing up for a free consultation or trial, or simply visiting a series of web pages. Whatever actions you feel will lead to capturing visitor’s information or generating sales can be measured as a part of conversion. Read more!
Life happens online, whether sharing key milestones on Facebook researching answers on Google and ‘How to’s’ on YouTube or searching for the best deals or the right restaurant the internet has become an integral part of our everyday life. We search and engage online both from home and on the go. According to Internet World Stats, there are over 215 million people using the Internet in North America alone. Having a website for your small business is no longer an option it is a MUST!
Whether you offer a product or service your consumers are using the internet to research and purchase the products or services that they need. The simplicity and convenience of online shopping has led to 73.9% of all Internet users shopping online, according to emarketer.
So if you are pondering whether or not to join the world wide web, stop and instead evaluate how you will effectively represent your business online. Here are a few things to remember:
- Your website is often the first interaction a potential client has with your business, first impressions are lasting.
- Your website should clearly articulate your product or service, be easy to navigate, and make it clear to your site visitors how to buy from you.
- Don’t forget the contact information, a form is not enough nor is just having a phone number. Every person’s preferences are different, I recommend including a form, a phone number, and an email address.
- Your website is not an online brochure; write concisely in a way that connects with your target audience, make it as interactive as possible, and encourage visitors to connect with you.
To learn more about making your website work for your business I invite you to view the recorded webcast “Is Your Website Just Another Pretty Face or a Lean Mean Marketing Machine?”
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