What Are the New Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses?

If you are starting up a small business, then it is more than likely that you will be looking into marketing strategies that will help in marketing your business and help it grow. There are marketing strategies that have existed that have been used by many with small businesses. There are new strategies that come up from time to time and some of them are said to work even better as compared to old strategies.

Some of the new marketing strategies are as follows:

Create content that is relevant to your website:

When people Google for products in your niche, you would want your website to appear among the first results. In order for this to happen, you need to create content to your website that will ensure you get listed among the top in Google’s searches. It is not hard creating content, except for the fact that you will need a lot of creativity and time. The content you create should be relevant to what you are offering.

Write for a trade magazine:

One good way of gaining recognition for yourself is if you wrote an interesting article on your niche and left your contact details. This way, you will be showcasing your knowledge on that particular topic and will be attracting customers as you do so.

Make use of keywords:

When people do the search for things on Google, they usually use particular keywords or phrases. Google will bring up the top websites that have these keywords or keyword phrases. You too could do the same by writing content that has these keywords written in a sensible and consistent manner. If there are too many keywords, Google will consider it trash and will not place your website in the top rankings.

Sponsor your local team:

With this marketing strategy, you can buy uniforms and equipment for your local team and sponsor them. Aside from doing something charitable for your community, you will be getting the attention you need from the local press. This will catapult you into the limelight for being a business owner who takes an interest in what his community does. This will also allow you to get recognition from business promoters who might take an interest in your business.

Use to handwritten follow-up cards:

Once you’ve had a business meeting with a prospective client, you can send out thank-you cards with a personalized touch on them. Few people do this kind of gesture these days, and hence you will stand out among the crowd for your prospective employers. When they want to do something that is within your professional niche, they will be sure to remember you among the first. It may seem simple and old fashion, but it does work its wonders.

Use guest blogging:

If there are blogs written for your particular niche then you can offer to post content on that blog in exchange for the owner setting up a link back to your own website. That way, you can show your expertise on the subject matter and at the same time.

Of the many marketing strategies available for small businesses, these are the most effective.

You must learn more about new marketing strategies for small business and other marketing secrets. Thomas Freers is an Online Marketing Coach for what is arguably the World’s Largest Internet Marketing School available today. He specializes in Article Marketing, Social Media networking and various other marketing strategies and works with small and large companies to help them customize their marketing campaigns. With over 50 different marketing strategies available today you must learn which one suits your personality.


Email Marketing

What do you think when you hear the term email marketing? Do you think these “spam” emails that clog your Inbox trying to sell you supplements to iPods? Or do you think of the Nigerian lawyer who needs your help to get 300 million dollars on behalf of his client died on the country, which average willingly shares with you? I hope not, because email marketing is true that none of these things.

True e-mail marketing is a form of electronic commerce. It allows you to reach out and offer your product or service to customers and other stakeholders in a very cost effective. It’s a way that you as a trusted supplier can achieve and reach customers and potential customers. True e-mail marketing is permission marketing. Your customers will give their permission for you to contact them.

An email consists of two main components of the information that you want to covey. It’s usually in text form and a call to action, where the reader responds to your offer. A well-written email usually gets some kind of response from the reader. Because it does, it makes email a powerful tool for business. To get the desired reaction, an email should create a strong emotional response in the mind of the reader. This response could be a desire to connect with a person, an idea, a product, or a service. This emotional response occurs on many levels and it’s important for the businesses to understand how to reach those levels and learn how to construct email messages that are effective in provoking the desired response from readers.

It’s useful to use an email marketing service such as iContact or Constant Contact for your email marketing campaign. These companies have safe guards in place that prevents recipients from flagging your email domain as spam. Even though you ask for permission, a recipient can flag your message as spam, if he decides he doesn’t want to receive your email any more.

Companies like iContact and Constant Contact host your lists and provide tools to create your own email marketing campaigns. They provide reports; let you know how many people opened your email and how many people clicked through to any links you may have included in your email. Another important service that these companies provide is permission-based email subscriptions, where your customer agrees to let you send them emails. Permission-based email subscriptions are very effective in gaining consumer trust and safeguarding customers against junk mail.

What’s the big secret about email marketing? IContact offers these five rules for effective email messages:

1. Offer helpful, meaningful and value-driven content

2. Direct your message toward an individual rather than large groups (personalize the message)

3. Create integrated emails that can easily and strategically used with other internet applications

4. Allow open communication between sender and receiver

5. Messages must provide safe and private modes of interacting with others, including businesses, online

While email marketing remains extremely cost effective, big companies use email testing to ensure their email messages bring the highest returns possible. With email testing, you write two versions of your email-marketing message and two different titles. You divide your database of email addresses in to four groups (there are many scientific ways to do that and we could spend all day discussing the pros and cons of this topic). Using your email message provider tools, track the results to see which headline gets the most “opens,” and which message gets the most click-through. By doing this you can determine which headline has the greatest impact on your audience. You can also determine which of the two offers that you created, develops the most interest with your target audience. You will find this information useful for your next email-marketing message.

In developing its e-mail campaigns, make sure you use social networks and power through popular Internet web sites and online applications such as Kaboodle, Facebook, Digg, Twitter and increase the number of people can go. By understanding what emails do for you and what makes them effective, small and medium businesses can use to simplify and streamline the process of marketing via email, making them competitive with larger companies. For a small amount of money, any company can create massive e-mail marketing.

If this is something you’d like to try, but do not have the skills to do it yourself, take a marketing professional to help you. I am ready to help you with e-mail marketing efforts. If you need advice or complete a strategic marketing plan, you can call or send an e-mail to discuss your needs.


Email Marketing

What do you think when you hear the term email marketing? Do you think these “spam” emails that clog your Inbox trying to sell you supplements to iPods? Or do you think of the Nigerian lawyer who needs your help to get 300 million dollars on behalf of his client died on the country, which average willingly shares with you? I hope not, because email marketing is true that none of these things.

True e-mail marketing is a form of electronic commerce. It allows you to reach out and offer your product or service to customers and other stakeholders in a very cost effective. It’s a way that you as a trusted supplier can achieve and reach customers and potential customers. True e-mail marketing is permission marketing. Your customers will give their permission for you to contact them.

An email consists of two main components of the information that you want to covey. It’s usually in text form and a call to action, where the reader responds to your offer. A well-written email usually gets some kind of response from the reader. Because it does, it makes email a powerful tool for business. To get the desired reaction, an email should create a strong emotional response in the mind of the reader. This response could be a desire to connect with a person, an idea, a product, or a service. This emotional response occurs on many levels and it’s important for the businesses to understand how to reach those levels and learn how to construct email messages that are effective in provoking the desired response from readers.

It’s useful to use an email marketing service such as iContact or Constant Contact for your email marketing campaign. These companies have safe guards in place that prevents recipients from flagging your email domain as spam. Even though you ask for permission, a recipient can flag your message as spam, if he decides he doesn’t want to receive your email any more.

Companies like iContact and Constant Contact host your lists and provide tools to create your own email marketing campaigns. They provide reports; let you know how many people opened your email and how many people clicked through to any links you may have included in your email. Another important service that these companies provide is permission-based email subscriptions, where your customer agrees to let you send them emails. Permission-based email subscriptions are very effective in gaining consumer trust and safeguarding customers against junk mail.

What’s the big secret about email marketing? IContact offers these five rules for effective email messages:

1. Offer helpful, meaningful and value-driven content

2. Direct your message toward an individual rather than large groups (personalize the message)

3. Create integrated emails that can easily and strategically used with other internet applications

4. Allow open communication between sender and receiver

5. Messages must provide safe and private modes of interacting with others, including businesses, online

While email marketing remains extremely cost effective, big companies use email testing to ensure their email messages bring the highest returns possible. With email testing, you write two versions of your email-marketing message and two different titles. You divide your database of email addresses in to four groups (there are many scientific ways to do that and we could spend all day discussing the pros and cons of this topic). Using your email message provider tools, track the results to see which headline gets the most “opens,” and which message gets the most click-through. By doing this you can determine which headline has the greatest impact on your audience. You can also determine which of the two offers that you created, develops the most interest with your target audience. You will find this information useful for your next email-marketing message.

In developing its e-mail campaigns, make sure you use social networks and power through popular Internet web sites and online applications such as Kaboodle, Facebook, Digg, Twitter and increase the number of people can go. By understanding what emails do for you and what makes them effective, small and medium businesses can use to simplify and streamline the process of marketing via email, making them competitive with larger companies. For a small amount of money, any company can create massive e-mail marketing.

If this is something you’d like to try, but do not have the skills to do it yourself, take a marketing professional to help you. I am ready to help you with e-mail marketing efforts. If you need advice or complete a strategic marketing plan, you can call or send an e-mail to discuss your needs.


Email Marketing Strategy

In the present world situation, status, e-mail is one of the best symbols of the inevitable and the most advanced technologies. There is no doubt. But if you’re doing your business using this code, especially if you try to use the same for all people in the business, is fruitful in all kinds of people, or not?

This is the main theme. If you want to do business and doing propaganda and publicity associated with a strategy for email marketing, the way will be extended to all standards of the people? Will it be available to all people? Assume that if you do your business in a particular standard that holds up well informed, educated public, then fine.

What about the rest of the people those with perhaps lower degree of technological or literacy advancement? Even though if you approach any “email marketing consultant” for “email marketing tips”, what they would like to say to you?

Will they give you their best advice to just to do your business among certain people only? It may even start to seem they cannot help you to promote and spread your own business among ordinary people.

So it is very clear that in the same manner, one can simply do his/her business successfully by making use of their service telemarketing or market research software only among technically well developed people.

But at the same time, if you want to do your business with great success, you have to approach and satisfy the normal standard of people only. Hence, making use of email marketing strategy may not give fruitful result to all businessmen and businesses.

For some companies, you will need to send their employees or even he / she will have to address all clients personally to promote each product. Currently on the competitive global market, a task to sell a product to people is always a challenge. You can’t do his business a success if they do not respond directly to people about their true feelings about a particular product.


To Regulate Online Marketing, Advertising Standards Authority Extends Remit

The Advertising Standards Authority has announced that it will soon be regulating online marketing, in response to thousands of complaints which until now fell outside its jurisdiction. The ASA website clarifies:

“From next year, the rules in the UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (the CAP Code) will apply in full to marketing communications online, including the rules relating to misleading advertising, social responsibility and the protection of children.”

The ASA already regulates paid-for advertising space, but the new CAP code sanctions will also cover marketing communications on the advertiser’s own website. In addition, they will regulate any advertising in non-paid-for space, such as on social media sites. Of course, this only applies to sites the ASA can control, so the move will only have repercussions for UK digital marketing.

Websites breaching this policy could be subject to the removal of their paid-for advertisements, removal of pages linking to prohibited marketing, or even being emblazoned with an ASA advertisement highlighting their non-compliance. Meanwhile, content classed as “journalistic” or “relating to causes or ideas” will be above the law.

The operation will be funded by a 0.1% levy on paid-for search engine advertising, with additional capital from Google. With implementation forecasted for March 1st 2011, CAP Services have six months “to conduct training work to raise awareness and educate business on the requirements of the CAP Code, particularly amongst those who may not previously have been subject to ASA regulation”.


Online Marketing Tools Guide

The Web has given entrepreneurs lots of new places to market themselves. But it can also help them streamline their marketing in the nonvirtual world.

Numerous sites let you easily design fliers, stationery and business cards; while others let you edit photos and put together booklets and newsletters. And if you decide you need outside help for these tasks, online marketplaces let you solicit ideas from hosts of designers.

Here’s a look at some of the offerings out there—and how to stay away from pitfalls when using them.

Get It on Paper

Dozens of sites have popped up that can help you design and print your own fliers, brochures and other marketing materials. And many of them provide ready-made templates, so all you need to do is choose what you’d like—such as stationery, business cards or fliers—and plug in your information.

Among smaller providers, one popular option is Vistaprint NV, which lets you use a template or upload your own designs and logo. Vistaprint also lets you set up contact lists and will address and send out your materials.

A number of bigger names offer these kinds of services, as well. Staples Inc. and FedEx Corp., for instance, let you design your products on their websites to be printed out in the companies’ stores or delivered. Hewlett-Packard Co.’s Marketsplash service lets users customize materials on its website free, then print them out at home or a professional shop. Right now, only owners of HP products can use the service, but starting in September, all small-business owners will get free access.

Making Pictures Perfect

A good photo—whether it’s a shot of your product or a customer using your service—can be crucial to a marketing campaign. But getting a good photo can be a tough task for an amateur shutterbug.

That’s where the Web comes in. Photo-editing software and sites—including Google Inc.’s free Picasa program—make it easy to turn your photos into professional-quality products. You can crop photos, change the contrast, fix red-eye and perform other cleanup jobs that once required people to use software like Adobe Systems Inc.’s Photoshop. What’s more, sites such as Blurb Inc., Shutterfly Inc. and Eastman Kodak Co.’s Kodak Gallery make it simple to put together a marketing booklet using photographs that you’ve taken.

If you find that you’re not getting any good shots at all, many websites—such as iStockphoto, a subsidiary of Getty Images Inc., and Corbis Corp.’s Veer—will let you buy professional-level photos to use.

Be sure that you trust any site you use, however. In particular, make sure you’re confident that the sites actually hold the rights to the photos they’re offering. Improperly using a photo that someone else owns “can create a significant liability for your business,” says Michael Fleischner, founder of marketing consulting site MarketingScoop.com and The Marketing Blog.

Legitimate sites generally aren’t cheap and are tightly controlled, Mr. Fleischner says: “It’s virtually impossible to download anything from the sites without some type of subscription.”

Don’t Go It Alone

If you decide you need help getting your marketing materials together, the Web can help you get input from lots of professionals.

Crowdsourcing websites such as crowdSpring LLC allow you to post what sort of work you want done—such as having a new logo designed—and how much you’re willing to pay. The designers on the site—who number more than 67,000—can submit entries for the project, and from there you simply pick your favorite.

The site says each project receives about 110 submissions, and it typically takes nine to 10 days to get the first designs. The cost varies based on the project. The site sets minimums for all projects—ranging from $200 for a logo design to $1,000 for a product design—but the company can decide to pay whatever it wants above that, says co-founder Ross Kimbarovsky. Companies that use the service also pay a $39 listing fee and a 15% commission on the award amount.

Things to Keep in Mind

While do-it-yourself websites simplify things, there are some potential traps to watch out for.

If you’re using a template for any of your materials, be careful that it fits with your brand and with what you’re hoping to express without sending confusing messages to your customers. If your business is trying to present itself as very laid back or hip, for instance, a very formal template might send the wrong message.

What’s more, try to tweak the designs a little, if possible, to make your company seem unique—and avoid looking like you just filled in the blanks on a form. Most sites have settings that allow you to do this kind of tweaking.

Finally, don’t get so tied up in technology that you forget the basics of marketing. If you’re using a website to design postcards, for instance, be sure to include a coupon—so when the coupon gets redeemed, you know the cards are working.

“Don’t create content for content’s sake,” says Ann Handley, chief content officer of Marketing Profs LLC, an online publisher and media company. “Add some call to action in whatever marketing you’re doing. It’s basic stuff, but people forget about that when they get into tools and cool stuff.”


Online Ad Spending Skyrockets

Revenues from online advertising in Canada blew past expectations in recession-ravaged 2009 and are expected to jump another 15% this year, according to new figures out Tuesday.

The Interactive Advertising Bureau of Canada said revenues hit $1.82 billion last year and will reach $2.1 billion in 2010.

“It seems incredible that after passing the $1 billion revenue mark just two years ago — and after the worst recession in history — Internet advertising in Canada is poised to break through to the $2 billion mark in 2010,” said Paula Gignac, president of IAB Canada.

What’s more impressive, according to Gignac, is that ad spending on the web in Canada has grown at a double-digit rate in the face of low, no, or negative growth in other countries.

Online ads are rapidly closing in on newspaper ad revenues with Internet spots now representing 13% of the combined $13.8 billion spent on advertising in all media.

In 2009, search-based ads continued to lead the share of dollars spent on the web, followed by display ads and classifieds. Sales of online video ads nearly doubled last year to hit $20 million while publisher-based email ads lost ground, falling from $18 million in 2008 to just $13 million in 2009.

Ads embedded within video games were also reported for the first time with $3 million in revenues.

Overall, automotive, packaged goods, financial, technology and retail companies spent most on Internet ads.


SEO and Website Marketing Firm Helps Small Businesses Dominate The Search Engines With SEO

Seattle, WA — Seattle SEO expert and website marketing firm is making its mission to help small businesses dominate search engines like Google and Bing with SEO (search engine optimization) in order to deliver free traffic to their websites.

Small businesses that invest in professional website marketing and quality SEO services can position themselves to save money on long-term website marketing expenses, because the organic (or free) traffic that search engine optimization provides tends to build and increase over time. In contrast, paid traffic sources like PPC (Pay Per Click) or classified ads in conventional vehicles like the Yellow Pages may also be effective at attracting customers, but they stop working as soon as a business stops making payments for the ads.

In today’s economy, many small business owners want online marketing methods that are effective on a long-term basis, yet they don’t have the time to become proficient in SEO or manage the campaigns themselves. And they don’t have the budget to afford a fully staffed in-house internet marketing department. That’s where Musson Media, a local Seattle SEO company, becomes a valuable partner.

“Professionals such as chiropractors, dentists, personal trainers, massage therapists, dermatologists, speakers, trainers, contractors, physicians work full time applying their expertise. They’re often too busy to carry out a small business marketing plan. But they can gather new client leads and increase visitors to their websites by working with local experts like us who really know Seattle SEO,” said Tyler Musson, small business SEO expert and owner of MussonMedia.com.

“We started Musson Media Consulting to help small business owners grow their business online while reducing their marketing expenses. But we also found that many businesses are not fully aware of how much benefit they can get from website marketing and SEO (search engine optimization), so we offer our clients plenty of free comprehensive video courses in the basic fundamentals of online promotion and SEO. They can visit our website to view the videos at their convenience,” added Tyler.

Musson Media’s professionals are experienced in designing custom SEO marketing strategies for small business owners. From in-depth keyword research, to onsite integration of content, videos, and images, to off site linking plans and social media marketing, the Musson Media Consulting team has knowledge and expertise with search engine optimization and website marketing that small business owners need to grow their businesses.


Online Marketing Basics

Building a business online isn’t rocket science, but, like starting a business anywhere, it requires discipline, attention to detail and trial and error. One of the most important aspects of making your online small business work is to focus your efforts in the direction of online marketing, making sure your Website or blog appears high in search results and through social media for customers seeking your products or services. In bricks and mortar businesses it’s location, location location. In online business no better means exists to help your business be found than paying attention to online marketing. We’ll look at some online marketing basics and issues that can create difficulty for marketing your small business online in this roundup from Small Business Trends.

Small Business Basics

Creating video to market your small business in local search. Small business marketing coach Bryan Bliss explains how to market your small business in local Internet search by creating simple online video content. Bryan even gives a step by step tutorial for creating a video for a local real estate business including a digital walk-through for potential buyers. Generosity Marketing

Google, Verizon deal could threaten small business. A recent New York Times article looks at the problems that may arise if a deal allows faster delivery of online content for companies that pay for it. The agreement between search giant Google and Internet provider Verizon could favor large companies who could afford to pay to have their online content upload more quickly than small companies. Critics of the deal want safe guards that will keep the Internet an equal playing field for all. NYTimes.com

Tools & Tips

It’s about more than marketing. Web analytics is famously useful as a marketing tool. But that, it turns out, is not all Web analytics is good for. This post looks at some of the other aspects of your business that can benefit from Web analytics as a small business tool. Level Analytics

Beware of false prophets. Understandably, Aaron Wall, an SEO expert, is generally suspicious of anyone who claims Search Engine Optimization is unimportant when it comes to online marketing. And well he should be. But there’s a deeper message to this post about failing to properly understand the nuts and bolts of how to market your own business online…and about the dangers of trusting in shortcuts. SEO Book

A tool for better local search engine marketing. Check out this overview of a tool that can help you look for ideas on marketing your small business locally. Though the Internet is global, marketing your business locally can be just as important and the Internet can be important for that too. The right approach can help you dominate that niche too. Small Business Search Marketing

Strategy

How do you pick your marketing keywords? Attracting the right customers to your Website will be one of the keys to your online business success. And the key to attracting the right customer is using the right keywords. Stoney deGeyter has some thoughts about those right keywords. He’s also got some thoughts on the wrong ones. Are you using them? Search Engine Guide

How online marketing leads to offline business. Online marketing is not just for online only businesses…obviously. Many bricks and mortar small businesses have benefited greatly from use of online marketing techniques. How do they do it? And how can you and other small business owners imitate their success. Duct Tape Marketing

Targeting your customers on your Website. Can you imagine knowing everything (or everything important) about your customer the first time they visit your site? A variety of companies are offering onsite marketing options to help you target your visitors and know how best to serve them immediately. This article looks at some of the options available. WSJ

SEO Ideas

Staying away from the dark side. Like the Jedi Knights in the popular Star Wars movie franchise, staying away from the dark side is important, especially the dark side of SEO. Here are five tips that you shouldn’t follow when marketing your online business. Stay away from the dark side and you and your business will prosper. CIK Marketing
So what exactly are Google tags? And how can they help you market your business online. Is this ever your lucky day? Online marketing consultant Chris Piepho has been working with these little tools for almost a month now and has some important data to share.


Tips for Maximizing Your Sales Letter Response

1. Send your sales letter to the right people.

If the intent of your sales letter is to sell home renovation services, for example, you want to send it just to homeowners in your area, not to apartment dwellers. While the best mailing list is one that you’ve built personally from your own prospect list, Canada Post offers householder counts that you can use to focus your sales letter campaign on specific categories of potential customers. You can also buy mailing lists from mail list brokers.

2. Personalize your sales letter.

Addressing the sales letter personally rather than using a salutation such as “Dear Friend” or “Dear Homeowner” increases the response rate to your sales letter. Using mail merge makes this easy to do.

3. Write different versions of your sales letter for different segments of your target market.

All your customers or clients are not the same. So why expect them all to be persuaded by exactly the same sales letter? Create different versions of your sales letter for different segments of your target market by emphasizing different benefits of your offer or by changing the benefits completely.

4. Include an order form with your sales letter.

One of the keys of a successful sales letter is making it easy for your prospective customer to take action. Including an order form with your letter gives the customer another option for taking immediate action, making it easier for her to respond by fax or mail.

5. Don’t include fancy graphics in your sales letter.

The general rule is that the closer your sales letter resembles a typed letter from one person to another the better the response. You may find including a single photo of your product (with a caption) works well, but leave the intensive graphics for your brochure. You don’t want your sales letter to look like an advertisement.