Category Archives: seo

Who’d Have Thunk It?

work-hard

An advertiser called me today in a last ditched attempt to get his venue full for New Years Eve because he thought just by having a well known local band booked that people would come. I think he’d been watching Wayne’s World and truly believed if ‘You build it they will come’

When planning an event treat the event a bit like a shop-what are people going to buy in your shop? Booking a local band, cabaret artist, musician or celebrity etc. is the ‘product’ people will buy from you.

How will people buy from you? Think of how a shop advertises-they advertise in newspapers, on radio, they promote themselves with a sign outside the shop, promotes their wares on their website and via social media like Twitter and Facebook.

A busy shop doesn’t happen by accident and your event won’t be busy if you don’t ‘sell your wares to your public’

The customer who called me today hadn’t promoted the event on his own website-to the visitors which are his target audience. He hadn’t put it on Facebook either but would get his son to do it later.

Why wasn’t he fully booked by now he asked me.

RESEARCH!

It’s simple-people spend hours researching every aspect of their life-where are they going, what are they buying, who sells it etc.

If you’re not online you’ll start falling behind the competition.

You’ve got to start taking all this seriously if you want your business to survive in the future.

Learn how to market your business on Facebook- it’s a marketing tool and there is an art to it. Done badly and it can work against you. Learn how to use Twitter. Learn learn learn.

Someone said to me recently that they went on a short course to learn about social media and now update their pages while watching Eastenders. Don’t think of this as more work-think of it as networking.

If you need to advertise an event do it early and plan your campaign because you can’t expect a Wayne’s World moment to save the day.

The real motto is ‘Work hard and he bookings will come’

Advertisements

Repetition Builds Reputation

“Repetition is the mother of all skill.”
~ Tony Robbins, author of Unlimited Power

repetition3

 

Have you ever found yourself singing an advertising jingle when you haven’t heard it that day?

Reptition can build a reputation so you need to make sure that the message you are repeating is the right one.

A few years ago customers were allowed to advertise just once in my classified section of the newspaper but I knew that the customers wouldn’t get a response so I changed the packages to make them cheaper per night but the smallest frequency package became six night in a row. It gives customers the chance of repeating their message and with the repettion comes the sales.

I saw the classified section grow in size and got testimonials from our clients to say how many jobs they were booking.

Years ago I was taught that series campaigns worked best for the clients as different people read the newspaper every day-it’s no different nnow with online advertising-show people an advertisement once and you’ll be forgotton about-show them several times and the message starts to sink in.

Types of Repetition

The idea behind repetition is that when the consumer goes to buy a particular product, the name of your brand is the first one that comes to mind. There are several different types of advertising repetition. One is simply to repeat the same advertisement, such as a television commercial, over and over. For example, the same commercial may be broadcast at each ad break of a show. Another way to use repetition is to place the product or brand in as many places as possible. For example, print ads in newspapers and magazines, television ads, radio ads and utilize product placement on television shows or in movies. Another type of repetition is to use ads that are produced with similar styles, but have a slightly different final product. For example, television ads that use the same actors, but in different scenarios.

Now that companies can utilize social media brand repetition is even easier because you can ‘talk’ to you customers on lots of different channels.

I’m going to use a really obvious example of Coca Cola- Holidays Are Coming. The message is rife through Facebook as people photograph the Coca Cola bus, it’s on television and across most advertising channels-not all paid for I might add. The slogan has almost become synonymous with the brand.

You don’t need to be a huge company to make this work for you-just create a slogan or a message and repeat it everywhere you advertise.

How do I create a slogan?-when you have the time watch this video-it’s 16 minutes long but instead of telling you what to do it shows you how others are doing it

Don’t rush in to your campaign-if done right the same slogan can last you for years-maybe pick one of these (Don’t pick them all-just pick one:

  • Repeat your company ethos
  • Repeat why you are different from everyone else
  • Repeat why you are the best
  • Repeat what is unique about you
  • Repeat what you are all about

Example:

Rons Second Hand Car Garage- Never giving you The Runaround

Monastry College- Bringing Life In To Learning

Johns MOT’s- Servicing The Community Since 1979

Have a good week-hope to see your business advertising soon

A Closed Shop Is A Shop That Will Close

Right now is your shop closed?
closing

By closed I mean are your doors are locked, the lights turned off and your business day is over?

Or is your shop always open?-even when your shop door is locked and the lights are out your Facebook page is still buzzing with interest, your Twitter account is getting messages, you are networking on Linked in and people are buying from your online e-commerce shop.

Are you the business owner who says there’s no point me having a social media site when all people do is put up photographs of what they’ve eaten for tea?

If you are the business that is closed then you need to know how much business you are potentially missing out on.

Most people are not browsing the internet for personal reasons in work (Although we’ve all seen the person who is in work and supposedly too busy to help when they have a shopping website open-come on we’ve all been there)

So when do we browse?

*Lunch break

*After work

*Break time

*Weekends

And ere are a few stats on what people do online during their own time:

  • 41% if people like or followed a brand on a social media website
  • 43% of people found, bought or used a voucher
  • 59% of people found things to do/places to visit locally
  • 76% of people accessed social website

And wait for it

92% of people shopped online!

Internet users are browsing, researching, shopping and BUYING which is why you cannot afford to have a closed business.

But I Don’t have the time?

Find the time or pay someone to set up your ‘shop’ for you.

Don’t think of social media or websites as luxuries-these are necessities of any business.

Think of them in the same way you think of your shop sign, your advert in the phone book, your shop window.

Think of social media as a wage you need to pay because if you do it right websites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can tell more people about your business and what you are doing than any employee ever could.

I’m getting excited now- I want to shout out loud for you to believe, believe in the power of social media, create an open all hours shop and more importantly be a success.

Ok so calming down a bit now I need to end this blog-I have online shopping to do and a of course I want to see what my friends had for tea

Have a good week

Information on internet user habits taken from the great infographic below:
What do you do online?
What do you do online? is an infographic that was produced by Qmee

Cross Dressing and Divorce?

You don’t always have to be in full on sales mode to make social media work for you.

On November 24th 2013 Noah’s Yard in Uplands, Swansea changed their sign (As they do on a frequent basis) to Paul…I’m Divorcing you!

paul

Not the nicest of things to write perhaps but what did it do for Noahs?

300 people liked the post

38 people shared the post

37 people commented on it

It made front page news in the South Wales Evening Post both in print and online- four times with different updates!

And wait for it……. it also made The Sun newspaper too!

Wow!

So what’s my point?

My point is that hundreds of people engaged with Noah’s Yard and they weren’t trying to sell a thing.

  1. It brought their business to the attention of new customers
  2. It got people engaging with their Facebook page
  3. It got people talking about their business

How much would you pay to get coverage like this in the media?

I can tell you that if this was charged advertising space then the bill would be thousands!

As a newspaper we had a story which went viral meaning it was viewed all over the world-was it a sports story? Was it groundbreaking news? Was it a leak? No it was a video of a group of men dressed as women on a night out:

http://www.thisissouthwales.co.uk/Drag-queen-floors-thugs-Swansea-street-fight/story-12414029-detail/story.html#axzz2mKGExfP1

It’s not easy to get this exposure-some will happen by chance but you can be sucessful at being creative in the ways that you target your local audience.

It’s easy for me to tell you what not to do:

  1. Don’t always be in sell, sell, sell mode
  2. Engage with your audience and encourage participation
  3. Think of quirky things you can share about your business or business type.

I’ll add a great inforgraphic to my blog later for you to see a little more on how this works

 

Spread Your Net To Catch The Fish!

 fish

I’ve had some really good conversations with customers this week-I really enjoy being able to give advice on advertising and marketing-I’m not afraid to say when I feel that something won’t work. Money spent on advertising/ marketing that doesn’t work is not good business.

I’m not a fortune teller-I can’t promise 100% that a campaign will work-I can, however, guarantee how many people a campaign will reach, where those people live and what they read and where they read it.

I’ll give you a really good example- I spoke to a representitive from a large organisation who wanted to promote a scheme relevant to winter heating.

As a multi media organisation we can offer such a variety of ways to target local people that I can help any business ‘get seen’

After finding out what the company wanted to acheive I thought about the types of people that may need the service being offered. It turned out to be people of all ages and all walks of life- this may make it sound easy but in fact it’s much more difficult because for advertisnig to work you need to ‘reach out’ to people.

There are different ways you can reach out to people-it can be by way of:

  • A good headline
  • A specific offer
  • Marketing/advertising under specific headings so people seek to find
  • Marketing/advertising in a place where it will be seen by the right reader

For this specific campaign i decided the best route was to target by platform-so publicising the campaign in places I knew the right type of reader would see it.

 

Here is what I presented to the client and why-I thought this would be useful for you to see how to choose the right places for your business and why (I’ve left it generic because it can apply wherever you are):

  1. Classified section in the newspaper-people use classified on a seek to buy basis so it’s a great opportunity to attract the attention of readers who have money to spend plus they are in the buying frame of mind
  2. Television listing pages-think about where people are when they are reading the TV pages-warm and cosy in their homes-where better to be to make a decision about something home related? I also considered the age of a typical reader- it’s mainly the older generation that refer to in print TV guides as the younger ones tend to use on demand or info on their TV’s
  3. Run of paper-the main body of the paper is where people go to read the news-advertising has to be strong to draw people away from it-or newsworthy which is what this campaign is. I thought the message behind the campaign would be ideally suited alongside the news.
  4. Digital advertising- research has been carried out that people trust online adverts far more on a local news website than they do other sites. You can reach a whole new audience demographic and on our website a younger, more affluent reader-speaks itself.
  5. Reader offers-the company has some giveaways for our readers-an added extra to the campaign but great for the camapigns awareness and we don’t charge for this service
  6. Editorial- If a campaign is of huge interest to our readers we may support it with editorial coverage. In addition to the advertising campaign mentioned before this is the final cherry on the cake to make a campaign which:
  • Reaches a vast number of local people
  • Targets different ages/ reader types
  • Targets in print and online audience
  • Targets people across a span of a few weeks

I’m really lucky to be able to offer such a vast range of different media to local businesses. Unlike many others we can offer ways to market a business:

  • Online
  • In print
  • Sponsorship
  • Niche magazines
  • Events
  • Editorial

If you’d like me to help you or if you would like any advice please get in touch

Embrace The Moaners

Consumers may seem to complain more than ever but it’s just that they can.

ignored-bw

They can complain by telephone, email, social media, review sites and many other ways. Wherever you look people are expressing their views about customer service.

Customer service needs to be reinvented for a world where consumers are demanding

more, where comparisons happen in real time, where loyalty is fleeting and there’s diminishing

friction in changing brands. Customer service is where social starts. (Adam Hanfit)

Consumers may seem to complain more than ever but it’s just that they can. They can complain by telephone, email, social media, review sites and many other ways. Wherever you look people are expressing their views about customer service.

I’ve found some great tips for you to handle these comments and guess what? I didn’t find them on a huge retailers site or a major online business-I found them on a Heating and Plumbing website because they know in their industry their consumers are already starting to use online reviews :

Top tips for handling negative online reviews

In an increasingly online, social, and mobile world, customer reviews play an important role in influencing consumer behaviour, with many using these to guide their purchasing decisions – whether it’s going for an early morning coffee or choosing a local plumber.
Many small local business owners rely heavily on their web presence to communicate with customers and attract new business.
Where once, any fallout from a dissatisfied customer was limited to their friends and family, the popularity of social media has magnified the impact disgruntled customers can have on a business’ reputation. Unhappy customers can sound off instantly to a wide audience before they’ve considered taking their complaint up with the company direct.
Regardless of how great the product or customer service, business owners should accept that negative reviews are part of running a business, and have a strategy in place to manage these effectively. Here are a few top tips to tackle bad online customer reviews – nipping them in the bud as soon as they strike.
Acknowledge and respond straight away It’s vital to respond to a customer complaint as quickly and thoughtfully as possible. That way you’ll minimise any potential damage and show customers that you care and take their loyalty very seriously. Your customers are always connected, so the longer it takes to respond to a negative or false representation of your business, the more time it has to spread. Time is of the essence and a day is a long time in the world of social media.
Be professional and demonstrate strong empathy Always respond to the bad review in a respectful and sincere way that communicates you empathise with the customer and understand why they are unhappy. If you’ve had a bad day, admit it, apologise for the customer’s negative experience, and invite them to return so you can make it up to them in some way. Even if you don’t agree with what’s being claimed, be positive and avoid getting into an argument. If you feel the review is wrong then say why but in a professional and reasoned manner. The key here is to create a meaningful, personal dialogue, and to do this publicly to show other prospective customers that you’re listening and addressing the matter accordingly.
Take the conversation off-line While it’s important to post a short, immediate public response to a bad review – showing other customers that you’re addressing and resolving the situation – further detailed communication with the dissatisfied customer should be taken off-line as soon as possible to avoid potential further public criticism. Communicating via email or phone helps to make things feel more personal, speeds up the resolution process and protects a customer’s privacy. This approach can also help take the heat out of the situation and calm things down more quickly.
Turn negative feedback into an opportunity Reviews can provide key insights into the health of your business and are a great indicator of how customers feel they are being treated. Business owners should be taking full advantage of this feedback – encouraging all customers to provide it. Bad reviews should be regarded by business owners as a useful early-warning mechanism for spotting problems and addressing these before they escalate. A company’s response to negative reviews provides a perfect opportunity to show customers that management is responsive to any concerns or dissatisfaction they may have.
Because of the weight they carry, online reviews are one of the most effective word-of-mouth marketing and reputation-building tools for small business. Negative customer reviews have the potential to cause short-term harm if not handled correctly. Following these few simple guidelines will go a long way to avoiding potential long-term damage to business reputation. Better still, these negative reviews can help businesses to better understand their customer’s issues and improve products and services offered.
I think this advice is great-it may seem basic but so often have I seen businesses retaliate or complain about the customers who leave bad reviews for them. Personally it really turns me against them.
I recently bought a photo canvasss from Wowcher but didn’t complete my order with the affiliated company properly so I sent an email asking for help. Within 72 hours I had a reply and they offered to help me. I have to say I was all geared up for a fight because I didn’t think they would assist. I was so happy I sent an almost overwhelming email of gratitude because they exceeded my expectations.
My advice to you today is embrace reviews as they can work in your favour.
A reply to a review/complaint shows:
  • You care about your customers
  • You want to improve your service
  • You are approachable
  • You are contactable

Make sure you put aside time to ensure your customers are happy:

“If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell 6 friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6,000 friends.”

Jeff Bezos

Budget Cuts=Stop Advertising-right?

Wrong! If you become invisible to your customers then sooner or later you will go out of business. You need to be discovered in more places than ever-in print, online, in conversation and in the market place.

man

When you read this study I hope you feel the same way I did-light bulb moment. It’s such common sense-I so wished I’d read it sooner!
Is your business out there?
“The company courageous enough to stay in the fight when everybody is playing it safe can bring about dramatic change in market position”