Tag Archives: Twitter

Social Girls, Happy Feet and a Room Full of Cool

Picture-2Whew! What a weekend. On Saturday I shared a day with a group of women who are tearing up the social media spectrum with a little help from all that is Twitter, Facebook and blog-o-licious. This weekend I got the opportunity to hang with Chicks That Click!  

ChicksWhoClickConference0509

I am really not even certain where to begin. I learned so much that I seriously would like to go to the conference again next weekend. I am not sure I was able to soak up everything, but man oh man did I have a blast. It was engaging, it was challenging, we got free crock flip flops and it was FUN!  Therefore, since many of you were not able to attend and many of you are looking for more social media tools, tricks and trends to help you navigate though the ever-changing waters, I have decided each week to feature a new tip, tool or trick I learned at CWC09. 

This week’s CWC09 tip …. (drum roll please …..) 

If you’re using Twitter, do you have an application that lives on your desk top that’s easy to use?

If your answer is “no”, TweetDeck can change and rock  your world! 

Here’s what you can do:

-See everything you might possibly need to stay connected-list of friends, list of important-to-you searches, list of direct messages

– Tweet directly from the interface

– Design your own dashboard that fits your Twitter needs

– Share photos easily with friends

The list goes on and on, check it out for yourself!

There’s so much more to share about this weekend. More to come in the weeks that follow.

Happy Tweet Decking-

Sarah @ Dog-Eared Pages

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Defining The Biz Social Media Space

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Lately, I have been doing a lot of reading concerning the Social Media Landscape. In the last two days I have found a couple of articles that small business owners should read. The first, reported on CNN.com, is about what you should and shouldn’t say on your Facebook, LinkedIn and various other “social” sites from a business perspective. I am all about people having personality, their own flare and unique selling points-that’s what makes the world go ’round, this just gives you some guidelines on how to do that.

I also, ran across this article,sent to me from Ad Age, and I thought it was worth passing on to you. If you’re wondering what all the buzz is about Social Media, here’s a great example of how many ad agencies are approaching the subject. One thing that is worth noting are the case studies that are included in the article. 

Happy Social Media Construction!

Sarah @Dog-Eared Pages

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Filed under Advertising, Business Development, copywriting, Marketing, Small Business Solutions

A Recipe For Success In a Recession

 

Breakfast Time @ Lion's Gate-Newburg, Oregon- June '08

Breakfast Time @ Lion's Gate-Newburg, Oregon- June '08

 

When times of running a business seem a financial challenge, the first thing business owners examine is their bottom line. I mean after all, business is business and if you’re loosing money, it’s time to review the damage. But what many business owners do first is cut their marketing budget.  However, many experts believe cutting your marketing budget, is the one thing you shouldn’t do in a recession. Here’s some evidence why.

 

First of all did you know that MTV, iPod and even Crest White Strips were all launched successfully during recessionary times? It’s true, and most of the success they experienced is attributed to their marketing battle plan and innovation.

So how do you increase your company’s exposure to the market, save money and at the same time make your marketing budget go further?

Here’s a list of tactics that can help your reallocate your thinking about your marketing budget and in turn effectively promote your company.

Jump on the social media bandwagon. Build up your social interactions.

In a recent study conducted by the Association of National Advertisers, a whopping 28% said that social media integration would provide the most growth opportunity for their companies. What’s more when asked to name their preferred vehicle for this integration, 32% said they didn’t know what to use.  Now that’s an opportunity.

Be one of the first in your field to try out Facebook. Maybe you could Twitter about the latest innovation your company has created. It’s all about getting your business out there and what’s more, often times the most you’ll invest is time as many of the social media platforms are FREE!

If you don’t understand the social media arena, ask around, people, like myself, specialize in helping companies set up professional social media solutions and would welcome the chance to clearly explain the tactics that will work for your company.

Look at your customer’s feedback.

One thing I always ask my client is  …

“Do you know what your clients are saying about you?”

Several clients will answer yes and others may have a blank stare. Bottom line if you don’t know how your clients feel about your product or the service you provide, now is the time to beef up on that golden nugget of info.  Positive testimonials from your customers are key and give your business validity. Here’s how you can gather testimonials:

·      Send out a survey through Survey Monkey that asks about their experience with your business.

·      Have them place a recommendation on your LinkedIn page.

·      Schedule a one-on-one meeting with your clients and record their thoughts

Bottom line before you ever publish their feedback in a brochure, on your website or within a letter, ask their permission to use their comments. This is also a great way to improve the product or service you offer. Many companies say it’s their client’s feedback that helped them craft their top-selling offerings.

Strategically plan your marketing budget.

When faced with a recession, it makes sense to create a detailed plan for your company. Your probably already have a fiscal projection in place for 2009, but many companies don’t generate a marketing plan. I have often heard people say, “If I have money left after the first quarter, I might place an ad in the local paper.” While this may have worked in solid financial times, it won’t work now.

You have to generate a buzz about your company and the only way I know to do that is to keep your business front and center of your target market. Creating a thoughtfully executed marketing strategy that has some component which places your company out there each month is vital.  There are many companies, like mine, that specialize in helping clients create a plan. However, if you feel comfortable charting out there here’s an article from Entrepreneur.com than can help get your started.

Bottom line … it’s time we make our dollars work harder for us. Through effective marketing and self-promotion tactics, you can generate a buzz about your company that grabs your target market’s attention and prompts them to buy your product or service. It just takes a bit of planning, a pinch of creativity and a sprinkle of customer insight. Walla … a recipe for success has been created.

If you want to know more about how to effectively market your business, let me know. I have lots of research on the subject and would be happy to tailor a solution to fit your needs.

 

Happy Marketing-

Sarah @ Dog-Eared Pages

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Filed under Business Development, Marketing, marketing in a down economy, Small Business Solutions, Uncategorized

Does Your Business Stand Out in the Crowd?

 

Pumpkin Hunting Oct. 08

Pumpkin Hunting Oct. 08

 

This weekend my husband and I journeyed out with friends for the annual pumpkin patch expo. It’s something we have done for a few years now and it’s always a blast. Maybe it’s just being around dear friends or the fact that we drive golf carts in search of the perfect pumpkin, I don’t know, but whatever it is, it’s interesting to see which pumpkins we award as the “perfect pumpkin to carve”.

One friends says she likes the warty pumpkins because they have character. Another likes pumpkins that are smooth and flat on one side as they are easier to carve. We like pumpkins that are oval. To us, that’s what a pumpkin “should” look like. 

So as we were in search for our perfect pumpkin I was reminded how crafting a marketing message to catch a customer’s attention can not only seem like a quest, but the message can also get lost in a sea of other everyone else is doing. Finding your business might be very similar to looking for the right pumpkin. There’s a million of them out there, but what really fits your needs?

Here’s how to stand out in the crowded market and make your marketing message the one customer’s find, remember and act upon.

  • Delve into what your competitors are doing. Know their message inside and out. Is it successful? If not, why?  How can you capitalize on their weaknesses? Are your competitors using flashy images? Should they be and if so, why aren’t you using eye-popping images to grab attention?
  • Use keywords and messaging that resonates with your audience. Know what your customer’s speak sounds like. What are terms that get their attention? Are you talking over their heads?
  • Define your target market and talk to them. If you haven’t had a chance to chat with the people who purchase your products/services you should. How can you effectively communicate your company’s message to them if you don’t know what challenges, goals or expectations your customers seek? It’s a good practice to set up focus groups and parade your advertising ideas in front of the people that will be purchasing your product/services. Gage your message’s effectiveness based on their comments. Revise if you need to. It’s much cheaper to revise than to pull the plug on a campaign that’s been running for a few weeks or months!
  • Try something new.  With the Web 2.0 boom, there are a lot of new vehicles that your company can use to get your message out there without spending a ton of ad dollars. Survey your solid client base. See if they know about Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube or even MySpace. If they don’t, discover why they haven’t had a chance to learn about Web 2.0 and take it on as a new way to market yourself if it’s true to your target market, of course.
While you may not find a marketing vehicle that’s totally perfect, you can always fine-tune your ideas so that your customers are more willing to choose your product over the competition. With a little homework on your part, you can find the right messaging and and solid marketing platform. In the end, you create a more effective way to catch your customer’s eye.
All the best-

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Filed under Advertising, copywriting, Marketing, Small Business Solutions, Writing

Hold On To Your Twitter Finger!

Today was webolicious I must say. And if you haven’t heard of Dan Melton, owner of NPT Labs (Non-Profit Tech. Labs) then shame on you. He’s quite a combo platter, one part web genius, one part brilliant presenter and one part best friend to a non-profit organization. I’m bullish on how his company has set into motion a way to totally transform the non-profit world!

Dan Melton-Kauffman Foundation Webitation for Council of Philanthropy 9-10-08

Dan Melton-Kauffman Foundation Webotation for Council of Philanthropy 9-10-08

 

 

So what’s all to Twitter about you ask? Well today at the Kaffman Foundation as part of their Council of Philanthropy’s educational seminars, I saw an amazing webotation (presentation with web spiffs) and was thrilled to see someone in the Kansas City area creating solutions for the non-profit sector. 

Let’s say you’re a non-profit organization and you are still trying to design a website where donors, volunteers and prospective employees can come and see what you’re all about … you’re a bit behind the times. According to Melton, that’s part of the old Web 1.0 world and it’s time to head on to Web 2.0.

What’s Web 2.0 you ask? Well Melton says, “It’s totally phat.” It’s combining blogs, Twitter, RSS feeds, widgets and so much more into your total online presence.  It’s social networking sites (MySpace, LinkedIn, etc.), surveys online, anything that can tell your story and get people to visit your website, other than your website. 

And that’s just the start. Melton’s company is changing the way non-profits are marketing themselves and helping them find the tools to make their organization shine online.  

I know some of you who read my blog are part of the non-profit sector. Check out Dan Melton for your company and your sanity. His company has some great things currently in development that will help make your organization profitable and give you a stronger voice in the online community.

Happy Social Networking-

Sarah @ Dog-Eared Pages

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