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Showing posts from 2017

Startup Marketing Lessons

My startup experience began in college at what ended up becoming a very successful company. After graduating, I moved on to a corporate role at IBM. As I learned the ropes at an established company, I continued investing and advising startups on the side.

Through each career move, I learned the value of practicing an intentional business strategy. Putting short and long-term goals against decisions and challenging my own choices has been the best way for each of my companies to pivot and evolve when necessary. Here are few of the lessons I’ve learned in my latest endeavor and over the years:

Fast Cash Doesn’t Sell
Going into a prospect’s office and saying I’ll earn your company $20 for every $1 dollar spent on my solution seldom works. It seems too good to be true. While my promise still stands, it can’t be the sole selling point of my product or service because in the customer's experience, there probably was someone who couldn’t deliver on such a bold statement before me.

To be…

What you need to know about lead Generation

Lead generation doesn’t matter for every business. Before you invest in lead generation, read on to find out if it is right for your company.

If you’re selling candy at the local convenience store, then you can aim for an immediate sale. Likewise if you sell other low price products like a $2 pen, your customers are ready to make a purchase right when they walk into your store.

If your business sells complex and high price products, it doesn’t make sense to ask for a sale right away. Instead, lead generation is the better way to go.

Let’s quickly define the term lead generation:

Lead generation is a method of “warming up” potential clients to your business and moving them on the path to eventually buying.

Contrast lead generation to retail sales at a store in your city. For most stores, you probably walk in and buy a magazine or chocolate bar and continue with your day. There’s not much of a “warm up” process in that case.

If you sell to businesses or offer high price services, lead g…

10 Social Media Posts Ideas to Keep Your Small Business Internet Presence Fresh.

Many small businesses find a lot of value in building their internet presence through social media. It gives them a way to share a side of the business that is not all about products and promotions. The best way to establish and strengthen your brand is to share the story that comes with it.

Humanize your business, put a face to the name, and tell people what there is to love about your work besides the features and benefits. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snap-chat give you the tools you’ll need to tell your story from a personal perspective.

Check out these 10 Social Media Posts Ideas to Keep Your Small Business Internet Presence Fresh.:

1. Post in real-time
People are now breaking news in real-time before it becomes official news. It’s no wonder Snapchat is an ever-growing trend. Remember, your posts don’t have to be directly related to your products or services however, what you share should “talk” around your brand. Embrace the rise of real-time social storytelli…

Make Your Cleaning Services Business Stand Out From the Crowd

It’s no secret. competition is booming in the business of cleaning services. But that doesn’t mean that your small business can’t be extremely successful. Don’t throw in the towel just yet. There’s room for everyone, you just have to make sure you get to it first!

The good thing about cleaning is that it works like Mother Nature, it’s inevitable. People are always going to need it, mess happens, and it doesn’t just disappear on it’s own.

That’s proof enough that the business makes sense, but the challenge is how do you rise above your competition? How do you get clients in your area before another company does?

Like most companies, cleaning services work best when you build a good rapport with your customers, so that they will return to schedule regular cleaning services.

First, let’s look at simple and effective ways to engage people to notice your small business, and by that we mean, doing a little more than taping flyers to the community mailbox.

Keep your website updated
This will …

How can I get readers for my blog?

Use Social Media
Social media can be a very effective way of getting the word out about your blog. Platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram etc can be brilliant at driving traffic.

Just posting your blogs onto social media won’t work very well. Using social media to promote your blog means you will need to put in some time to create genuine and thoughtful posts and connections.

Guest Posting/Blogging
Contact sites you feel you could write a great, interesting post for that would interest their readers. Contact the editors of those sites with a personal, engaging and unique message complimenting them on their site and pitching some ideas for articles.

Make sure you make it clear why you think you can add value to their readers with your guest post. The more information you can provide about what you plan on writing the more likely you are to get a positive response, it’s all about making it as easy as possible for them to make a decision.

Commenting and Connecting
Anothe…

How to Generate Leads with White Papers

What’s the difference between selling $900,000 business software and a $0.99 iPhone App? One requires getting the attention of an executive in a company…

While the other requires a few taps of your fingers. If you’re in the business of selling complex, high price products and services – aircraft, enterprise technology, consulting to name a few – traditional, consumer oriented sales strategies will not work.

Ever wondered why? Let’s take you inside the buying process at a multi-billion dollar company. This example is based on a real bank that spends over $9 billion per year on suppliers and vendors of all kinds including multi-million dollar purchases with professional services firms and technology companies. This is how you generate leads with white papers.

Inside The Corporate Buying Process.
As a sales representation visiting Big Bank Inc, what’s the first thing you try? You might try looking up a prospect on LinkedIn and sending them a cold email (or call).

Unless you’re unusually w…

5 ways to Build and Establish your Brand.

So you’ve taken a leap of faith and started your own business, Congratulations! For some, it’s an exciting time to venture out and put their entrepreneurial skills to the ultimate challenge, a challenge they’re so eager to embark on. For others, it can be quite terrifying to try something new, wondering if the world will appreciate what they have to offer as they determine the best path to take to success.

Your brand is how you want to appear to the world. How well do you want to be recognized? How will you build your authority and your following? We learned a thing or two about establishing your personal brand from thought leader, Thomas Smale, a contributor for Entrepreneur.com and Founder of FE International shared an insightful article on this topic. Here are 5 Brand Building Tips:

1. Be true to yourself
For a brand to be “authentic”, so should the creator. Your brand should tell your story, who you are, what you believe in, where you came from, and how you came to creating your ow…

Change The Way People See Your Dental Practice

Change The Way People See Your Dental Practice
Did you know, Google offers a unique tool that allows people to tour the inside of your dental office, before walking through your doors? Over half of prospective patients will research dental offices online before deciding to book an appointment or request a consultation. They want to know where you’re located; what it looks like inside and out; what other patients have to say about their experience through online reviews; and how to get in contact. With so many other businesses in the area, it’s essential to meet people’s expectations by appearing in their search results. People need to see a business appear online with active postings and updated content in order for them to feel confident enough that a business is in fact up and running.   What are the first steps?Having a well designed website is a great start. However, for small business owners like: dental offices, walk-in offices, and other physician practices that offer services f…

Online Reputation & Reviews for Doctors, Dentists and Physicians

Online Reputation & Reviews for Doctors, Dentists and Physicians
When it comes to research for important decision-making processes, especially for medical and health inquires, online reputation & reviews for doctors, dentists and physicians can be the difference between getting a new patient or deterring others from making an appointment. Statistics show local businesses which offer a service that is most likely to affect our health and well-being, safety, or comfort and hospitality, are those that people believe a strong reputation is most important. When it comes to research for important decision-making processes, especially for medical and health inquires, online reputation & reviews for doctors, dentists and physicians can be the difference between getting a new patient or deterring others from making an appointment. When asked, “For which of these local business types does ‘Reputation’ matter the most when choosing a business?” Here were the key findings: Doctor / Denti…

How do I respond to Negative / Positive Company Reviews Online?

How do I respond to Negative / Positive Company Reviews Online? Responding to page reviews online is arguably the most important aspect of engagement, solely because of the way reviews are used as a tool for company research. When the modern consumer knows that they need a product or service, the first thing they do is research different brands to find the best option to suit their needs (comparison shopping). Some consumers care more about a bang for their buck, other consumers care more about the quality of the product, but all consumers care about being cared about. Responding to reviews does just that by showing researches (those reading the reviews on your page) that you actually take the time to read customer feedback, are thankful for their patronage, and would be willing to resolve an issue if one were to arise. BEFORE YOU START:To respond to a page review for the whole world to see, consider the following:Would you describe your culture as fun or formal? This changes the tone…

Negative Effects of Not Having an Internet Presence for Your Small Business

Negative Effects of Not Having an Internet Presence for Your Small BusinessSmall businesses should value the need for online marketing and building their online presence. It’s important to note that online presence is not only established in the way you promote and sell your products online. There are definitely negative effects for not having a proper internet presence for your small business. With proper internet presence, you can establish the story behind your brand to your audience. If you own a local bakery or coffee shop, people want to see the behind the scenes in visuals, through photos and video. Sharing your story humanizes your brand, it gives it warmth and makes it all the more desirable to potential customers.  Of course, being a business owner you may not always have the time to regularly update your blog or manage social media. Which is why there are services available like Airi Business to provide who will work to build your internet presence for you.  It’s no longer …

How do I get a Profile Canada Business Listing?

How do I get a Profile Canada Business Listing?BEFORE YOU START:Profile Canada is free to list your business but not to respond to reviews. Go to profilecanada.com/grow-your-business for more info.  Add a Business to Profile Canada:Go to www.profilecanada.com.What is your relationship to this company? Select: I’m the owner of this company.I work for this company.I don’t work here, but I’m acting on behalf of this company.I’m a user of Profile Canada improving the business listing.Add Key Business Info:Name.City.Address.Postal Code.Business Phone.Website.Business Description:Toll Free Number.Fax Number.Email.Search and Select your Business Category.Answer Survey Q’s:What is your top online marketing challenge?Are you currently working with an SEO provider?Create your Profile Canada Account:First Name.Last Name.City.Email.Password / Confirm PasswordEnter CAPTCHA text.Click Submit Info and Create Account.Confirm Profile Canada’s Verification Email (check all email categories). After conf…

How do I implement Search Engine Optimization on my Websites?

How do I implement Search Engine Optimization on my Websites?Before You Start: Make sure the keywords you are planning to use are ideal for your business! Optimizing your webpages around bad keywords can be a huge waste of efforts. For help determining your optimal keywords, See Optimal Keyword Detection.Step 1:Find the webpage best suited to start SEO Optimization.Search: ( site:website.com “target keyword” ) to find which webpage is best suited to be optimized for that “target keyword”.  Doing this is extremely helpful when your website has a lot of pages. If your website has only a few pages, you should already know which one to optimize. Step 2:Optimize the Page Title Tag (meta tag). The Page Title Tag is what appears first in search engine results, and also what appears in your browser’s title bar. Search Engines do have some ranking weight on page title tags, so remember when optimizing your page title tag to do the following: Be Mindful of Page Title Length: (50-60 characters)Pl…

How do I get my business listed on MapQuest?

How do I get my business listed on MapQuest?BEFORE YOU START:If you are an American looking to create a MapQuest business listing, go to https://listings.mapquest.com, and complete the submission form. Input fields on MapQuest.com’s listings page doesn’t have province or postal code options for Canadian business owners.  Step 1: Add your Business to MapQuestGo to https://help.mapquest.com.Enter your company email (gmail) account and create a password.Create a subject for the message (i.e new business listing).Enter Your Name.Select the reason for this report: “Add New Business.”How does the business currently appear on MapQuest: It does not.Description – (full description of issue).Business Name:Address: City, State / Province, Zip.           Business Phone:Owner’s Name:Business Email:Number of Locations:Website:Featured Message:Business category:About Us:Upload Attachment: Company LogoStep 2: Fix an Error on your MapQuest Listing.Go to  Mapquest Help.Select the most appropriate issue…

How to improve rankings on google maps; Top 10 tips for Local SEO

Local business owners we talk to love to embrace the do-it-yourself attitude, so we thought it would be a good post to present the basics for do-it-yourself online marketing for local businesses. We often here: “Why should I pay someone if I can do it myself?” Of course, that’s usually if we had all the time in the world. Unfortunately, Local SEO can become time consuming very quickly, especially due to the complexity of the fragmented local search market.

However, it is possible for owners to work on a little bit each month to improve their rankings on Google Maps for Local SEO, or improve their Yelp profile (Online Reputation Management) to reach new traffic, or add fresh content or a blog to their website (Search Engine Optimization) in order to improve their Google Search Rankings. Part of the do-it-yourself marketing strategy is to prioritize your efforts based on what you’re trying to achieve and the amount of work that goes into each effort. Many of our customers seem to ask a…