How To Make Your Business Customer Friendly

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

Keeping your business customer-friendly is important to longterm success. If you focus on your customers and giving them a great product or service with additional support, you’re far more likely to have repeat business than if you created a slapdash product or service, took your customers’ money and did nothing else.

Having The Right Marketing Strategy
Marketing is a big part of owning a business. It’s your advertising and follow-up process so you’re going to want to make sure that it’s done right. It’s the way that the world sees you, and arguably how they will all judge you. As we know, first impressions are everything in the business world so we need to make sure our advertising is as customer-centric as possible. Customers are much more likely to use a company if the advertising is based off a promotional standpoint rather than a “putting other businesses down.” Just because this tactic works for fast food places does not mean it would work for you.

Have a look here for the best sales promotion examples to give you an idea. If your marketing is aggressive then your company may give off an arrogant vibe which people won’t likely respond to in the way you’d like them to respond, but if it’s a friendly advert that is offering promotions then people will be much more likely to begin the purchase process with you.

Customer Service Team
Good customer service is essential to being able to say your business is customer friendly. It refers to the way that your company interacts with your customers, whether this be to sort out an order issue or just a general inquiry. If you’re after one of these teams fast you can hire them here, however it’s often better to have your own in-house customer service. If you have a problem with an order for example, and you’re wanting to sort it out, if you get in contact with the company and their replies are slow and uninformative then you’re not going to have a very good experience with them at all and are going to probably never return back because you’ve had a bad time with them. However, if you have a good experience with a fast response rate you are likely to do return business.

24 Hour Call Service
We don’t always have time to pick up the phone in the 21st century; whether it’s in the business world or the personal one, you’re not always available to pick up the phone, which is why you should invest in a 24-hour call service or web-based chat. If you can’t pick up the phone when it rings, it means that you’re going to miss one of two things; you’re either going to miss a call that is to do with a purchase, meaning that you’re going to miss out on a sale, or you’re going to miss out on a business related call which will make the process that the call was regarding much slower. These issues can be mitigated by a call service as they’re going to pick up every call for you that you miss meaning that business is never lost. But it comes with another benefit: for people from different time zones calling you, you’re going to often miss out on them because you’re not going to be awake when they’re calling, so by having a 24-hour service it opens up to a whole new market meaning you can become more successful!

There is more to keeping your business customer friendly and focused. You can learn more marketing-related tips here.

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Three tips for Marketing Success

Marketing tips

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

Marketing is the skill of telling the right people, the right message to get them interested in your brand and products. To do this effectively, you have to stay ahead of the curve, constantly updating how you convey the message and where you are sharing it. 

Be mobile
If the strategy that you are using isn’t optimized for mobile technology, then that is a massive part of the market that you are missing out on. Over 2.1 billion people have smart phones, and they check them almost 50 times a day. This gives you, as a marketer access to these people, even when they are the go. Marketing strategies that include downloadable apps; including games, mobile search ads, in app advertisement, and even SMS vouchers.  Remember that the advantage of these types of marketing tools is that they are much more likely to reach the individual users that you have identified as someone with the potential to be interested in your product, which can make a smaller, more targeted campaign effective. After all, it all boils down to getting your message in front of the right people. 

Be relevant
It’s also vital that your marketing materials are relevant to the audience you are targeting to make them successful. To do this, you first need to identify the type of person that you are looking to market to, including factors such as gender, age, physical location and other attributes.

Then, the next step and is where the technological advancements come in is to use a more advanced CMS that will allow you to deliver content specific to particular users. Remember in modern IT, savvy marketing lets you reach fewer customers overall but the customers you do reach are more likely to purchase from you.  

Be interactive
Technological advances provide us with rich marketing opportunities. In particular, it allows an element of interaction that was previously unknown. This is so useful because if potential customers are interacting with content about your product, then they are already showing a level of commitment or strength of feeling that can be harnessed and ultimately converted into sales.

People can watch videos, play games, vote, comment and ask questions across several platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest, and through live videos and webinars. This level of interaction is a great tool for marketers to use because it creates an ongoing dialogue and relationship with a highly-motivated target audience. By interacting with a smaller, more engaged audience base, you have an opportunity to gather information which can further inform future marketing campaigns as well as future product development.

The Marketing Secrets That Could Turn Your Business Into A Success

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

Marketing is a crucial element for all businesses. It’s one thing to be passionate about your business, but success relies on others sharing that passion too. Small business can suffer from a lack of marketing resources and experience. There are a number of things you can do to help compensate for resources and experience. 

Educate yourself (for free)
While there are courses you can take that will improve your marketing knowledge, these can be an expense you didn’t plan to include in your business plan. The great thing about the internet is that there are a lot of marketing experts out there who not only have the necessary knowledge but are willing to share it. Take a look at some of the top marketing blogs available that share the latest and best marketing practices – you could learn a lot from them without having to pay for an expensive training course.

Marketing is something that is constantly evolving, with new techniques and case studies to learn from that can help you continue to grow. It doesn’t hurt to spend some time each week or month to look at what other businesses are doing and taking note of activities that have brought them success. This will help you to stay on top of the latest marketing trends and give you inspiration for your own strategies.

Be an opportunist
Effective marketing often relies on timing to succeed. You can boost your sales or attract more customers by planning your activities around the right times and dates – even down to the days of the week. If you run an online business, use social media over the weekend to highlight deals and offers. This is when networks tend to be quieter, but those who browse at this time will browse for longer. If you run a retail business with its own store, put your best promotions out towards the end of the week when people are more likely to hunt for bargains.

You will want to make sure you’re prepared by having enough stock and to make sure your systems are safeguarded against outages. Make sure you have on-call maintenance should your website go down, while on-site and break-fix services for all of your Zebra Technologies printers may help you to avoid closures caused by printing and labeling issues. A clear and comprehensive plan for executing promotions will help you to avoid disasters and get the most out of your marketing activity.

Be active on social media
Social media has become one of the easiest ways to tell people about your business. You can run effective social media marketing campaigns with a strategy that suits your budget, with many free tools at your disposal. This will involve learning how to use different platforms (hint: follow the norms and learn about the unspoken customs of each platform before jumping in) and find ways to listen to your audience to find out what they want. Social media can be a powerful tool when used correctly, growing your customer base and encouraging brand loyalty.

Social media is great for local businesses too. Having a presence on social media can help local people engage with your business, makes you easier to find and will allow you to develop some excellent customer relationships too. It’s important to note however that once you’ve set up an online presence, you can’t simply leave it to run itself – it requires regular input and updating to keep it relevant. Take the time to figure it all out and create an ongoing online marketing strategy to help you boost your sales. (If you want help J & A Creative can assist you in creating a content calendar to help you get started.)

Share your story
Against retail giants and large corporations, small businesses can feel largely ignored. However, the truth is that 93 percent of shoppers prefer small and local businesses as it not only helps them to support the local community but can help them to discover different and more unique products. Sharing your story as an independent retailer will resonate with customers who want to develop relationships with stores, rather than just purchase from some remote company without a connection.

Your marketing materials are a great place to share the story of your business and to take advantage of local interests and events taking place. Having a blog for your business that reveals more of your personality may also help shoppers make that connection and make them more likely to become regular customers.

Putting some more thought into your marketing activities can help your business to become better recognized and increase your sales. Make the most of the free marketing tools and resources that are out there to boost your activities and help spread the word about your business.

Digital media is a great leveler for small businesses

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

Digital media has revolutionized the landscape in which small businesses can connect with customers. For businesses just starting out, it’s common to regard digital realms as the domain of the heavy hitters, big brands, and the multinational corporations but in reality, the situation is quite the reverse. In the past businesses needed to spend lots of money on expensive advertising. Digital media is a great leveler, an open forum in which all businesses have an opportunity to reach their niche.

The vast and unparalleled connectivity afforded by digital media is both a blessing and a curse, because not only do you have an arsenal of tools to draw potential leads to your business but so does everyone else. The trick then is how to make your business digitally unmissable, drawing potential customers to you and not your competitors. Here are some ways in which you can use the online tools available to you to do just that.

Website
Your website should be at the heart of your digital strategy. The key is to think about the function that your website is there to facilitate and how you can optimize it. Many entrepreneurs struggle to get the most out of their website. That’s why a web design company helps businesses across the country and they can help you too. Whether your website is there to give customers information about your business or to sell products through e-commerce, it’s important to ensure that it has the design and UX (user experience) attributes to make sure customers have a pleasant, easy experience navigating your website.  

Social Media
A social media presence is at least as important as a website, though you may want to think about which platforms are right for you and your business goals. If you’re a restaurant or bakery then you may wish to post images products on Instagram or Pinterest, whereas if your business revolves around sharing knowledge and expertise or other soft skills, uploading video tutorials on YouTube or hosting webinars on Google Plus might be a better fit. Do your research. 

Blog
Your blog should be the mouthpiece of your business. It’s a platform for you to share your own individual knowledge and experience with existing customers, brand advocates and potential customers alike. Your own perspective is the one thing that your competitors can’t replicate so don’t be afraid to share it and allow your customers to build a personal relationship with you and your business.

Apps
You may not think that your business needs an app, but you’d be astonished how well an app can contribute to your online visibility. With 30 percent of all e-commerce in the US done through a mobile app, it’s an e-commerce tool that should be given serious consideration. Your very presence on Apple or Android’s app store can draw attention and business to your brand (particularly if combined with an eye catching and colorful logo). Apps can be used to incentivize customer loyalty and alert customers to special offers and promotions via push notifications. They can also help to expand your reach organically by giving customers incentives (via promotional codes) to introduce their friends, family members and colleagues to your business.    

Go off page
While your online presence grows your business, there are plenty of “off page” activities that you can carry out to make your business even more unmissable. Cause advocacy is a great tool to draw attention to your online profile while doing good for a charitable cause. Many big brands have aligned themselves with charitable causes to raise brand awareness and build positive associations with their products. In turn, the big brands help to raise awareness to the profitable causes, resulting in a mutually beneficial arrangement. Could you apply this to your business? Or perhaps you could raise your business profile by being an expert speaker at a public engagement or align with another non-competing brand on a mutually beneficial project, raising awareness of your business among their client base.

However you choose to make your brand digitally unmissable the tools are out there at your disposal, and if you’re not using them then you could be seriously impeding your own progress.

Are You Guilty Of Misunderstanding These Marketing Terms?

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

People often simplify certain aspects of digital marketing to the point that when they incorporate these concepts into a campaign, they no longer work. An example of this would be the basic understanding of SEO. You might think SEO is just a matter of adding the right keywords and links to your site. But before you even consider the SEO tactics you could use you should consider the type of SEO you need.

If you’re marketing to a local consumer base, you will need local SEO. That involves using tools like Google Business and has very little to do this with the design of the website. Or, you might prefer to pay for SEO directly using a service such as Adwords. Again, this is vastly different when compared with organic SEO tactics such as adding backlinks or using keywords carefully. Let’s examine some of the other marketing tactics that may get muddled. 

Social Media Marketing
A lot of new business owners think that social media marketing is just about joining as many social networks as possible, posting on them as often as they can. Interestingly though, if you use social media in this way, you won’t find much success with your marketing campaign. Not all business customers use every type of social media, and even if they do, you won’t catch their interest with a basic post. Instead, you need to make sure you are using sharable content on your networks. You need to produce and publish information and graphics that are going to excite or intrigue customers and clients.

To do this, you need to understand how to produce targeted content. This will directly appeal to clients who will be interested in your services and the products sold by your company. Or, you can think about using UGC. UGC or user generated content simply means that you get your clients and customers to create if for you. These are just two of the ways that you can use social marketing to be more effective in promoting your company.

Link Building
As soon as you read the word ‘link,’ you probably thought of something like this. Since that link is connected to a different area on the web, that is a backlink and backlinking can be a key part of an SEO linking strategy. Link building, on the other hand, is something completely different. Link building is a more general term to describe connecting with other websites and companies online to boost your business reach or expand your brand. It can evolve tactics like backlinking, but it might also use other strategies such as guest posts. By guest posting on another site, you can attract the users of that web page to your website, potentially increasing traffic and hopefully boosting customer numbers. If you simplify link building down to just using links within site content, you won’t make an impression on the market.

Growth Hacking
This term is fairly new and the first documented use was in 2010. What do people think it refers to? Usually, if you ask a new marketer what growth hacking is they suggest it’s a blackhat form of SEO or something that is ethically dubious. Of course, that’s not even remotely close to describing growth hacking. It’s actually just a term to describe ways to grow your company while keeping costs low. One possible growth hacking tactic would be using a free form of marketing like building a blog to connect with a customer base. Growth hacking tactics are particularly useful for SMEs with limited budgets.