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Your marketing should appeal to your customer, not you

in Uncategorized by Colleen Newvine Leave a comment

I’ve talked to marketing clients who personally hate social media, because they consider it an invasion of privacy or a waste of time, so they don’t want social media accounts for their businesses.
People have told me that because they personally don’t want any more email, they don’t want to offer a business e-newsletter.
It’s great to have empathy for your customer and it can be helpful if you‘re serving a clientele like yourself, but make no mistake — your marketing is designed to appeal to your current and potential customers, not to you.

Look out the window, not in the mirror

I absolutely get the instinct not to flood your customers with email — we’re all drowning a bit and you don’t want to irritate people who spend money with you.
But data show that e-newsletters are effective in driving sales. Assuming you‘re only emailing people who’ve opted in to your list and they can unsubscribe any time, you are only dropping your love notes into the inboxes of people who want to hear from you.
If email is effective and people have asked to hear from you, why aren’t you sending emails? Because you don’t want to hear from you?
If customers want to learn about you or talk with you on social media, do you really want to hide from them?
Watch what’s effective in boosting your sales. Ask your customers what they want and need. Keep checking your assumptions about your own preferences against what works for your customers. Read more

10 ways to improve your marketing during your slow season

in Uncategorized by Colleen Newvine Leave a comment

If your business slows down in the summer, now is the perfect time to tune up your marketing so you’re ready for your busy season.

When your calendar loosens up, you might:

review your website

    1. Review your website — replace any out-of-date information and add some new photos to freshen the look. Look at your design compared to others in your industry and if it feels dated or if it doesn’t work well on your phone, consider a redesign. That can be relatively simple if you use a template for WordPress, Squarespace or Wix.
    2. Write e-newsletters and blog posts for the future — get your content ready now so you can just hit “send” when you’re swamped later.
    3. Check out your competitors — what information can you find on their websites, e-newsletters and social media that might help you tell your customers how you’re different?
    4. Craft a 30-second description of what you do — practice a clear, compelling answer to the question “What do you do?” so you communicate the most important ideas about what makes your business special.
    5. Update your social media profiles — If you haven’t looked at your “about” section on your Facebook business page in a while or you don’t remember what your Twitter profile says, make sure all your accounts describe you and your business accurately.
    6. Review your analytics — look at your website data to see what search terms bring people to your site and how long they spend once they’re there, review the open rates for your marketing emails to see which subject lines, days and times get the most people looking, check out your social media metrics to see what kinds of posts get the most comments and shares. Your goals are to better understand what your customers want from you and to find out what’s working so you can repeat.
    7. Plan a snail mail campaign — now that we get so much email, a thoughtful printed piece might stand out in your customer’s mailbox. One client of mine gets cards custom designed by an artist and she hand writes messages to all her customers. I’ve gotten postcards designed and printed to write to prospects. Think about who you want to reach — current or potential customers — and what you could mail that would feel valuable instead of like junk mail.
    8. Research important conferences — are there events where you’ll meet new customers or connect with existing clients? Get those dates on your calendar and start budgeting for registration, travel, lodging and meals.
    9. Learn a new social media platform — choose a network where you think you might find your ideal customers, create an account and start watching how people interact.
    10. Schedule an appointment for marketing — get out your calendar, whether it’s hard copy or electronic, and block out time to work on your marketing for the rest of the year, such as 30 minutes every Friday, so you keep on top of creating fresh content and responding to customers as you get busier.
Do you have other ways you like to use your slow times to work on your marketing?