Vesta Digital Blog

Posts Tagged ‘marketing strategy

How To Stand Out and Increase Sales OnlineHaving a business website can be a huge cost advantage and very profitable. However, there are some downsides to it. For example, having a brick and mortar location in a high-traffic area can get you some great sales, but how do you get people to notice you on the web?

As a small business, you need to devote most of your time towards marketing your website to consumers that need your products or services. You just don’t get the natural traffic that larger brand names have and because of that – you have to work a little harder.

Stand out

It’s difficult to stand out on the web, but in order to appear higher up on a Google search (clearly a priority since most people never search past the second or third page of search results), work on your search engine optimization (SEO). SEO is the process of weaving popular search keywords into your copy so Google is more likely to rank your website above others when people are searching for something that relates to your brand, product, or service.

You can also use social media to your advantage by working a Twitter page or a Facebook page. Once you find people talking about issues that relate to what you’re selling, you can jump into the conversation and provide a solution. For example if you run a daycare business, listen to people speaking about the trials of having young children, join the conversation and offer a solution.

Encourage sales

If your site is easy to navigate, provides fresh (continuously updated) content, and unobtrusively directs people towards purchasing your product, you’re well on your way to having a profitable web presence. Your site must look professional, organized, and trustworthy. For example, if you can’t take quality pictures of your product, ask your supplier to send you some images you are allowed to use on your website.

There are so many little things you can do to engage your customers and encourage people to buy from your website and not your competitors. Take the time to review what you have, and invest the time to improve your business website and current market position.

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How To Cut Your Marketing Budget and Increase SalesAs prices all around us begin to rise, we start to get a little uneasy about budgets, pricing, and expenditures. Even though everyone is saying the economy is on the rise and us small business owners are on the upward trend, it’s always smart to cut your budget where you can afford.

Michale Kraus, a blogger, retail consultant, and marketing expert, wrote a great post for allbusiness.com that discusses a few ways you can cut your budget as a small business owner. Using these methods can not only save you money, but will be able to drive traffic to your business, convert leads into sales, and help your business grow in general.

Here are a few tips from Kraus:

Social Media

I continue to push the social media for two reasons:

  1. It’s free
  2. A whole generation of consumers live on social media

The evidence is mounting that social media does create awareness and can drive sales. And with 500 million Facebook users, not to mention millions of Twitter users,the growth of group buying sites like Groupon and Living Social, there are a lot of reasons to jump into the fray.

Email

Reaching out to your existing customers is key. After all, they already shop with you, so why not tap into this important market and give them a reason to visit? You can offer a deal, or perhaps your messaging is about a new line you brought in. Whatever you do, make sure you’re not spamming your best customers with too many emails, since you risk alienating them — and that’s something you cannot afford to do in this fragile economy.

Bounce Backs

There’s no better way to communicate with a customer and get them back into your store sooner than with a bounce back offer. Hand them a simple printed postcard or other piece when they’re at the cash wrap. Then tell them about the offer (usually it’s good for a discount then next time they visit). The beauty is that you specify the offer and the time period they can get the deal. So push it out four weeks to drive traffic back into your store. Double down and use social media to remind everyone about the card they’re holding and when it’s valid.

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How Social Media can Increase Productivity within Your BusinessMany small business owners are already taking advantage of the power of social media in their marketing efforts, but many are unaware of the tools social media has to increase internal communications and productivity within your company.

As an entrepreneur, one of your main priorities is maintaining proactive communication among your employees. In order to lead an entrepreneurial venture, everyone needs to have a sense of alignment with each other rather than a hierarchical system. This can only happen with an effective amount of communication.

Using Social Media in the Office

Many companies use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media channels to promote internal networking and encourage collaboration among different departments. This encourages stakeholders to participate and express their opinions. It gives everyone in your company a voice and an ability to be a part of the big picture – which is the key to having a great team and a successful company.

Instant visibility is one of the most useful aspects of social media. Posting something on a group wall is effective in that everyone can see it right away. Using file sharing techniques such as Google Docs or other programs is also useful that way various people can view, edit, and share important documents rather than waiting for documents to get passed around the office for approval – and you save paper!

Also, because many companies are using social media marketing, it can be beneficial for everyone in the company to have access and sharing ability on channels such as Facebook. That way, if any conversations come up about the company or the products the company offers, everyone can see it right away and take that information into account when making future product or marketing decisions.

Higher profits

Because everyone would be involved, have a voice, and have the visibility necessary – it can lead to an increase in collaboration and productivity. These are great assets to promote in a business setting because collaboration and efficiency can be your keys to increased revenue and profit.

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How To Raise Startup FundsBudding entrepreneurs are often faced with the ultimate barrier – having money to make money. While most mentors encourage entrepreneurs to use family, friends, savings accounts, and credit cards for startup capital, there are other alternatives to raising funds.

Here are a few options you have as alternatives to maxing out your credit cards or bumming funds from family and friends:

Do not pull out from your employer

If you are one of those budding entrepreneurs who finds opportunity inspired by a lack in your day job, you may have heard that it’s important to pull out from your employer in order to focus on your business plan. However, if you’re struggling to find capital to start up your business, your most prudent option is probably to keep your day job. You may have to work long nights as it usually takes just as much focus and work to finalize your business plan as it would to work 9-5 day job.

Just make sure your new venture isn’t getting in the way of your day job because scattering your efforts can lead you to mediocre performance in all areas rather than excellent performance in one main focus.

Pay your employees first

If you have already pulled out from your employer and have a fledgling company already up and going, it might be your best option to use the income from your acquired clients to finance your business expansion, rather than to seek external financing. Bootstrapping is an effective way to use your cash flow, at least temporarily. In order to put your company profits back into the business rather than your bank account, you’ll need to cut your expenses and really focus on acquiring leads.

There are many ways to cut expenses, like working from home rather than an office or even exercising deferred compensation with your suppliers.

As you are starting your own business, raising capital can be your number one priority as a business owner. Make sure you’re doing everything possible to cut expenses. You can easily cut your marketing budget by using social media marketing as your main channel for lead generation and brand awareness.

Distributed by IntelBuilder Social Media Platform

Verizon's iPhone 4 Advertising StrategyThere has been an incredible amount of buzz around cyberspace about Verizon’s launch of the iPhone 4. Many customers logged on and snagged their new phone at 3 a.m. on February 3rd. However, their cries of joy were soon snuffed out by the amount of outrage and frustration circulating on Twitter and Facebook of those customers who were confronted by Verizon’s website overload and inability to secure their new iPhone 4.

Verizon’s iPhone 4 available to existing Verizon customers for preorder, was sold out in less than a day.

Verizon’s Advertising

The first commercial launched by Verizon depicted a series of ticking clocks and countdowns in an effort to tease (and tease it did!) anxious Verizon customers anticipating their new toy.

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Verizon has also been unleashing a series of new advertisements to promote the iPhone 4’s launch (I think this was totally unnecessary because the 6-month rumor did enough advertising for it anyway). The new advertisements are very competitor-oriented in that they completely slam AT&T’s network problems.

One 30-second commercial blatantly slams AT&T’s call-dropping issue. This is a clever strategy for Verizon to take up considering everyone already knows what features the iPhone has. How else can you promote it other than a ‘my network is better than your network, nanny-nanny-boo-boo’ strategy?

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Verizon iPhone 4 Review

People have been furiously updating Twitter statuses and blogs with reviews of Verizon’s iPhone 4, now that the embargo on reviews has been lifted. The basic consensus is this: Verizon’s iPhone 4 is better for voice, worse for data.

Although the voice calls were reported to be very crisp, clear, and consistent, the data speeds have many (still) waiting customers a little antsy.

Walter S. Mossberg, a blogger for All Things Digital, says:

“AT&T’s network averaged 46% faster at download speeds and 24% faster at upload speeds. This speed difference was noticeable while doing tasks like downloading large numbers of emails, or waiting for complicated Web pages to load. AT&T’s speeds varied more while Verizon’s were more consistent, but overall, AT&T was more satisfying at cellular data.”

The Verizon iPhone 4 cannot do voice calls and data simultaneously and also only works in limited foreign countries, for voice calls only, and at very high roaming rates.

With the craze only increasing, I think it’s safe to say that Verizon’s marketing strategy was pretty spot on.

Distributed by IntelBuilder Social Media Platform

3 Steps to Take BEFORE Setting Up Your Business WebsiteIf you are starting a business online, you should be using as many resources as possible. Entrepreneur.com is a great resource for aspiring small business owners and new entrepreneurs. Allen Moon, the founder of On Deck Marketing (an internet marketing agency that specializes in product marketing strategies, e-commerce and online marketing), wrote a great post specifying each step you can take to set up and run a business online.

I decided to use a few of the steps to help you prepare before you set up your online business. These three steps from Moon’s original post are the most fundamental things you can do before you’re ready to set up your online business.

Step 1: Find a need and fill it

Most people who are just starting out make the mistake of looking for a product first, and a market second. To boost your chances of success, start with a market. The trick is to find a group of people who are searching for a solution to a problem, but not finding many results.

Step 2: Write copy that sells

There’s a proven sales copy formula that takes visitors through the selling process from the moment they arrive to the moment they make a purchase:

  1. Arouse interest with a compelling headline.
  2. Describe the problem your product solves.
  3. Establish your credibility as a solver of this problem.
  4. Add testimonials from people who have used your product.
  5. Talk about the product and how it benefits the user.
  6. Make an offer.
  7. Make a strong guarantee.
  8. Create urgency.
  9. Ask for the sale.

Step 3: Design and build your website

Once you’ve got your market and product, and you’ve nailed down your selling process, now you’re ready for your small-business web design. Remember to keep it simple. You have fewer than five seconds to grab someone’s attention–otherwise they’re gone, never to be seen again. Some important tips to keep in mind:

  • Choose one or two plain fonts on a white background.
  • Make your navigation clear and simple, and the same on every page.
  • Only use graphics, audio or video if they enhance your message.
  • Include an opt-in offer so you can collect e-mail addresses.
  • Make it easy to buy–no more than two clicks between potential customer and checkout.
  • Your website is your online storefront, so make it customer-friendly.

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How To Find Customers on FacebookBy now you should know how crucial it is to set up a Facebook page for your business. You may have already done so. I’ve also stressed how important it is to participate in conversations with people interested in your product and people in your industry.

Now, you may be wondering – how do I find people to talk to? – great question. There are several things you can do to find consumers to connect with and increase your consumer base in your social media network.

How to find customers

Marketing and advertising used to be about providing information for consumers so they can choose which brand to go with. Nowadays, it’s more important that a brand or company seeks out its own consumer base and provide them with solutions.

In order to find your own customer base, you can start with the Facebook directory. Go straight Facebook’s login page; at the very bottom there is a small horizontal menu on the right side. Click on “Pages” to see a Facebook directory of every page in existence on Facebook. Here, you can search alphabetically for any other company or brand related to your product.

You can also search for people and groups you may be interested in connecting with. Once you start conversing with people and contributing valuable posts on other walls related to your product, you should be able to see an increase in interest on your own page.

Be prepared to receive new customers

Before you seek out people to talk to, it’s crucial to have a well-designed Facebook page. Make sure that when people click the link to your business’s Facebook page that they don’t land on your wall. This can be a quick turn off to new customers because they have to search for the information they need. Instead, have your info page come up first (you can change this preference in your settings). This way, you can give your customers a brief overview of what you’re all about before they dive into the conversation or seek out promotions and special offers.

Be consistent about posting fresh and valuable information. You will lose customers if you just leave your Facebook page unattended. Spend a few minutes a day to continuously update your content and drive more customers to your website.

Distributed by IntelBuilder Social Media Platform