Spring is here and with the change of season, there should be a change in your marketing. Start by updating your Facebook cover photo! Here are a couple freebies that you can use for the upcoming “holidays”. Feel free to download and add your logo or sale information to them.
We’ve made it through back to school and are hopefully getting into a routine at home. How about at your business? Are you in a routine? Do you do the same thing every day? Well in business that might not be a great thing. You need to have a plan, but not necessarily a routine. As the holiday’s sneak up on us, make sure you are ready for them. Here are 3 holiday ready marketing ideas to get you ready for the season.
Plan your marketing in ADVANCE!
What’s that? You mean I shouldn’t just be flying by the seat of my pants, or scheduling that facebook ad to run the week before or week of an event?
If you haven’t already read my post from January on putting together a stupid simple easy marketing plan, check it out here. Assuming you already have your plan together (clears throat), let’s move on to your holiday plans.
Pick the holiday you want to start promoting, maybe have 1 or 2 big events or promotions over the holidays to focus on, and then a couple smaller ones. Look at what you have between now and then. Can you cross-promote your events? Do you have a newsletter going out between now and then? If not I hope you had it on your marketing calendar and put it in your last newsletter, right? 🙂
Set up your social media posts to start building the hype for your event. Share photos of your giveaways, food, apparel, location, etc, anything to build interest! Create a couple ads to run leading up to your holiday event.
Make sure your website is up to date too! Create new banner ads to promote your upcoming holiday event or sale. Or better yet, create a whole new page on your website dedicated to the sale! That way you can direct people to that page via all your social media posts!
Can you get another business involved? October is Co-op month, if you are part of a co-op why not work with the other co-ops in town to host a larger event. Bonus, you get your products/event in front of a larger audience!
Is your city doing any holiday events? Plan yours to coincide with what is already going on! Better yet, call up your local Chamber of Commerce and ask to get involved to help plan it! Did you know the more you are involved the better it is for your business? You get to meet other business owners, and get invovled with the community, plus, you get first crack at being an event sponsor, or hosting events at your local business! Awesome!
Hopefully, if things go well, you will be swamped during the holidays. And if you have been marketing your events well in advance, you should be.
But are you PREPARED for the increased traffic? Do you have extra staff available? Did you stock up on your most popular or sale items? There is nothing worse than going to a store for a promotion, and they are out of stock, or you can’t find anyone to help you! Don’t let all your hard work go down the drain, because of something so simple.
Get your store ready, get your staff ready, and most importantly get your customers ready for the upcoming holidays!
As a small business owner, you know how hard it is to grow your business and to attract customers. Now that you have established your business, and have started a customer list, how are you staying in contact with these customers? One of the easiest ways to do this is with a (weekly, bi-monthly, monthly or quarterly) newsletter.
Newsletters perform two major functions: reminding potential clients that you’re here, of all your services and of just how awesome you are!
Here are 3 reasons why you should use a newsletter to stay in touch with your customers.
Newsletters establish a connection
Newsletters are a personal way to create a connection with your existing and potential clients, and to display your expertise and knowledge on a deeper level. Companies who focus on relationship building are much more likely to generate loyalty and repeat business. Being THE resource your clients and potential clients look to for help and support is the perfect way to establish that connection.
Do you have a lot of customers asking how to use your product? Why not include a how-to article or video?
Do you see a new trend emerging in your field? Share the knowledge with your customers.
Will you be at an upcoming event? Let your customers know, so they can stop by and visit with you!
Is there a holiday around the corner? Share your related products, or tell your customers how to use your products to make them sales around the holiday.
Do you have a photo of someone using or wearing your product? A picture is worth a thousand words! Seeing your product in action can really capture your visual customers (like me!)
Newsletters drive sales
When someone views your newsletter, you’ve got the opportunity to highlight a product, explain the benefits, and connect them to a point of sale or call to action in moments.
Why not include a section of your newsletter to highlight customers using your products, as a testimonial for you! I’ve heard this a lot lately, “People hate to be sold, but they love to buy.” So instead of using your newsletter to sell your products and services, let your happy customers do it for you!
According to Econsultancy, 61% of shoppers read product reviews before making a purchase. If you can present your customers with everything they need in your newsletter, you are increasing your chance for a sale.
I have to admit, I bet more than once a month, I make a purchase because of a companies email I received. Although, to be fair, I live in a small town and do most of my shopping online. 🙂 But, I am proof that staying in your customers inbox, increases sales.
increase Website & Social Media traffic
Your newsletter plays a huge role in increasing your site’s traffic. Use links and images to direct customers to your website and social media pages. The more interaction with your brand a customer has the more loyal they will become to it. Use your newsletter to carry a theme across all your marketing that month. Highlight your topic on your website banner, direct mail pieces, social media posts, etc!
If you have an upcoming event, highlight it in your newsletter, and link to the event registration page on your website, or the Facebook event on your business page.
Want to feature a particular product, include a coupon, a visual image that will draw your customers eye and make them click on it to learn more about that product. Make sure the link they are taken to mentions that product or the coupon directly! Nothing will shut down a sale faster, than a link that takes them to your main page. A customer does not want to have to search for that item, make it as easy for them as possible!
Include links to your social media pages in your newsletter too. Including links within your articles is great, but I also recommend listing them somewhere on your newsletter as well. Make it easy for your customers to find and follow you on whatever platform they prefer! Seventy-eight percent of consumers said that companies’ social media posts impact their purchases (Socialmediatoday.com).
Newsletters are a great way of staying at the front of your target audience until they are ready to make a purchase from you. You worked hard to gain those customers, make sure they remember how awesome you are by being a resource they use regularly for information and tips.
Want to keep the discussion going? Join the FREE Facebook Community here, for small business to network with one another and swap marketing ideas and ask questions of myself and each other!
Many small business owners, especially in small towns, wonder if they should be advertising on Facebook. They wonder what good it would do them. Well, I am here to tell you it can do a ton to grow your business! Aside from having an updated Facebook page, which is a great way to stay in front of your customers, Facebook advertising can get you in front of a new audience, or just be a quick easy way to advertise a special or promotion to your community, for cheap! So here are 4 reasons why every small business should be advertising on Facebook.
1. It’s Easy
Facebook ads are easy, really! You don’t need to be a Facebook expert to create an ad (but knowing a few tips and tricks doesn’t hurt) Many small businesses are finding Facebook ads simple and effective!
2. You can reach people!
This is where people are hanging out, so why not reach them where they already spend their time? According to Adweek, there were 156.6 million people on Facebook last year. Where else can you get your ad in front of that many people?
There is a time and a place for postcards, or newspaper ads, but for a fraction of the cost, and time, a Facebook ad can reach so many more people!
3. It’s Targeted
Being able to target your ads to a specific audience is crucial to maximizing the effectiveness of any ad campaign. Facebook makes you more effective by letting you target users using not only demographic data (location, age range, gender), but also using interests data and social connections. For example, if you want to target people that are interested in your clothing line, you can specifically target people that Facebook identifies as being interested in, fashion, jewelry or other related interests. Or say that you want to target people that are interested in running, you could target fans of the Runner’s World Facebook page.
4. It’s CHEAP!
I know this is really what matters to all small business owners- how much will it cost me? Once you create your visual image for your ad, either yourself or have your marketing person do it for you. (*cough, cough – me -*cough, cough) Then you can run an ad for a day or week, for any specified dollar amount you want, depending on how frequent you want it to be seen. Seriously, ANY DOLLAR AMOUNT! You can put $5 or $100 on that ad! What do you have to lose at those prices?
Have you tried Facebook advertising for your small business or group? Let me know what kind of results you’ve seen below in the comments!
Want to learn more about Facebook? Join me for my FREE webinar this Friday, March 4 at 10:00am on Small Business Facebook basics. Learn more here!
We all have those feelings of doubt in life don’t we? Am I doing this right? What will they think of this? What if I fail? I have been working more with bloggers recently, and I wrote my frist ever guest post for my fellow Midwestern Entrepreneur, Krista Rae.
Krista, helps female creatives elevate their biz, increase conversions, and boost engagement through crafting strategic blogs.
I loved writing this post about overcoming your blogging fears, and relating my experiences to bloggers.
Want to update your Facebook cover image for Valentine’s Day? Here are a few fun Valentine’s Facebook freebies I created for you. Feel free to add your logo or custom text to these before you upload them to your Facebook page!
Share the love with your friends! And let me know in the comments if you used them!
2016 is here! Aaak! Have you planned your goals and marketing for the year? (Insert groans here) No? Why not? (Insert random grumbling here) If you have a difficult time putting together a strategy, and “plan” to just wing it, read this easy marketing plan guide. The perfect tool for small business owners to make the most of 2016, all in about 30 min!
Planning is necessary. But it doesn’t have to be hard! All you really have to do is set a few goals, and make a to-do list. That doesn’t sound too horrible does it? You’re thinking, “I make to-do lists all the time, maybe I CAN do this?!” YES! You can!
I like to put together a calendar. An easy marketing plan, that I, or my customers, can follow every month. To keep on track, and not forget, to do throughout the year. I am hoping at some point, in the beginning of your companies existence, you sat down and outlined your ideal customer, did some research to know where they are hanging out and where they get their information (aka online, Facebook, Twitter, local radio, TV ads, local events, magazines) and you know what your budget is. Since, I know you have all that done, let start planning.
Take a look back over last year, what worked for you? What brought the most customers through your doors? (Need help evaluating last year? Read last months post here!) Now, what do you want to do this year?
• Do you want to grow your social media following?
• Do you want to target local customers with direct mail pieces that really wow?
• Do you want to hold a customer appreciation event?
Download your free marketing template! Enter your email below:
Now let’s put these plans on your to-do list. Make a calendar (or download the free template above) with each month written down, and start moving the events and marketing techniques you want to use where they need to go. If you want to post on social media more frequently, put that on the calendar- every month. Do you have a special event happening in August? Put it on the calendar! Do you need to send out invitations or send out any special marketing pieces to go with that event? Put them on the calendar under the month those tasks need to be accomplished. See where we are going with this? Lay out all your important marketing tasks, quickly and easily with the above free easy marketing plan template!
Here is an example to get you started: Now that you have your template filled out, save it somewhere you will see every day, or at least once a week! Or better yet, put it on your calendar, and set reminders to go off at the appropriate time!
Do you work with a team? Share this with them so they know what to expect all year long. If you are creating calendar/reminder entries, share them with any and all team members who might be involved with the projects!
You are all done! You did it! You created your easy marketing plan for the whole year! Doesn’t that feel good? How long did it take you? 30 minutes?
I hope this template was helpful, please share this page with anyone you think might benefit! And please let me know how it works for you in the comments below!
Have you joined the community?
Need a place to bounce marketing ideas around, and ask questions?
Join SW Small Bussiness Marketing Facebook Forum (it’s 100% free) and get the support you need, access to our fantastic Facebook community and networking opportunities with other like-minded small business owners!
Have you noticed businesses that have their Facebook feed embedded directly on their website? Did you think that Facebook had discontinued that feature? Well, they did! But this year they released a new and improved way of adding a Facebook feed to your WordPress website. Facebook calls it a page plugin now, and it’s even easier for your customers to follow you on Facebook, without ever leaving your website.
Now to do this you need a wee bit of code to add to your website, but Facebook gives you everything you need, so don’t fret! You can get this code by going here on the Facebook For Developers page. On this page enter the URL of the Facebook page you would like to embed on your website.
Select if you want to show the header image, or cover photo, if you want your pages friends faces to be visible (I usually uncheck that option, I think it gets too cluttered looking with all those faces), then make sure the adapt plugin to container box is checked. That ensures where ever you put it on your website the box will fit the space provided.
My favorite new feature that Facebook added with this plugin are the tabs. You can specify if you want your Facebook events tab to be visible on your website plugin, or even allow people to submit Facebook messages directly on your website!
To do this in the tabs field, after timeline, add the tabs you would like to show, separated by commas.
Once you have all your options selected, you will see a preview of what your plugin will look like on your website.
If it looks correct, go ahead and click on ‘Get Code’.
A new box will pop up showing you the code to enter on your website.
Enter the lower box code on your website directly where you want the plugin to appear. In a sidebar or footer widget, or directly on a page. Just make sure when you paste in the code you are on the Text or HTML tab, not the visual tab on your page.
Once you save the code to place your plugin, and saved your page, the next step is the trickiest. On your WordPress dashboard go to Appearance > Editor, and click on Theme Header on the right.
Preferably you are using a child theme, so this page will be mostly blank. Below the last line paste in the top box of code you received from Facebook, and click update File.
Now go back to the page you added the plugin to, and check out your handy work!
You are now a pro at adding a Facebook feed to your website! Great job!
*Disclaimer: I am by no means an HTML expert. This is just what I have learned by adding the Facebook plugin to my websites, and customer website I have created. Different WordPress themes, and plugins can react differently when you edit the header.php on your website. I recommend backing up your website before making any changes in the Editor. If you are not comfortable editing your website this way, contact your web developer or drop me a line today!