Tag: Small business

Marketing 101: Using Social Media to Promote Small Businesses

Posted by admin - - Advertising, communication, customer, marketing, Social Media
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Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

In today’s age, social media is used for a variety of purposes.  Among them, personal communication is probably the most popular way of using social media.  Social media is an innovative way for people who are completely unrelated to connect, so naturally it can be used for many people and organizations.

 

Social media can also be used to promote businesses, both big and small.  Social media is a great way for organizations to get the word out about the services that they offer because it is free and is also a current method of communication.  To find out more the role of social media in promoting small businesses, and the impact of social media on these organizations, keep reading.

One of the biggest benefits of utilizing social media in the small business setting would be the ability to attract new customers.  Not only are you able to reach out to new customers, but you are able to find these customers by reaching out to current ones.  Offering a discount to new customers is a great way to expand your brand through social media.  Additionally, connecting with current customers can be done by advertising the organization’s social media accounts at the physical location of the business. This way, satisfied customers are able to connect with the organization and also help spread the word.

Another way that social media can impact a small business would be reduced cost in advertising.  Many traditional ways of promoting a business required a person to post an advertisement in a newspaper or other traditional medium.  This cost, however, has been eliminated as social networking sites are free. Some of the most popular sites include Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, Google plus and YouTube.

Open communication between the public and organization is a huge impact caused by social media.  The business is now able to receive immediate feedback from customers through social media websites. This can be positive, even if the feedback is negative because it can be used as constructive criticism.

Creating and maintaining your brand can be a big reason as to why one should use social media.  If the public has no idea what to expect from your business, social media can change that, and allow you to set the tone of your organization through status updates, colors and other content.

An example of some of the ways in which social media can affect a small business would be through the use of Facebook pages.  A few months ago as I was scrolling down on Facebook, I noticed a fashion page that my friend liked.  I then clicked the store webpage and was introduced to a great local business, just by using Facebook.   As you can see, social media works every minute of every day to bring us content that we might light, which is basically how small businesses are advertised.

Social media has the ability to make or break a small business.  If people like what they see through social media websites, a local business has the ability to go viral.  For this reason, social media has a profound and often positive effect on the small business.

 

 

 

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5 Resources for Direct Mail Marketing for Small Business

Posted by admin - - Advertising, marketing, marketing strategy
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Direct mail marketing is one of the most effective marketing tools in the arsenal of a small business. It combines the factors of cost effectiveness and precision with variability.

Typical advertising mail

Typical advertising mail (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The efficacy of direct mail as a marketing practice stems from the fact that the marketing message is delivered straight to the prospect thus cutting out the noise created by the other materials contained in marketing collateral such as brochures and catalogues.
Direct mail, while not being without its own disadvantages confers a lot of advantages on a small business. The biggest incentive for a small business to include direct mail is probably the lower cost of getting across directly to the prospects.

Direct mail also works with some tools in order to be effective. These tools include the following:

i.       Sales Letter: This is one of the most fundamental yet potent tools in the direct mail marketing kitty. A great sales letter simply identifies a problem, presents a solution to that problem and then makes an offer to send something free to that effect. The sales letter is usually short enough to keep the attention of the prospect but long enough to provide the necessary information at that time.

ii.     Flyer: This is one of the cheapest tools of direct mail marketing. It just requires that the small business owner print a simple flyer that will not discourage reading. It is important however, that you fold the flyer well so that it survives the postal journey. Additionally, the exposed parts of the flyer would need to contain sufficient information to entice the prospect to open and read further. These tactics are usually very effective.

iii.   Postcard: Postcards are also very inexpensive but effective in generating leads in marketing. These days, postcards printing need not be done through conventional printing procedure as a small business owner can simply get a nice design and then order the print online via the internet. The size determines the volume of the marketing message that will be included on the postcard. It is however, important to note that a postcard is typically small so the marketing message has to be generally brief and direct. Make it a point to ensure that important information like your website address and phone numbers are very visible so as to encourage visits.

iv.   Special Delivery: Well, special deliveries are really more expensive than ordinary snail mail but then it quite certainly guarantees that the prospect will read it. This is because a marketing material sent via express mail like FedEx or UPS indicates that the prospect is very special. It is also important not to overdo the marketing message, just keep it simple so that the prospects do not get turned off.

v.     Invitation: This is also a bit more expensive than the usual mail. The incentive here is that it allows the small business owner to get very personal. For example, an invitation to a launch sent with a personalized invitation is more likely to generate interest and likely positive response.

 

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