The Difference Between Super and Super Lame Marketing

There is no doubt that marketing is extremely important. Sales save businesses and correct marketing brings in hundreds if not thousands of sales for even very small businesses. The problem is people simply don’t know how to market to their target audience. In this article we are going to go through how to target a specific audience with a number of marketing channels, as well as using a few examples at why people simply don’t need to see your company on an advert in some cases.

FerrariSuper Marketing

There is only 1 thing that separates super marketing from terrible marketing and that’s that people who do this, make sales. They make sales for their clients, personal websites, personal businesses or anything. If you’re a marketing agency and you don’t make sales for your clients I’m afraid your not a marketing company. The key to marketing is targeting the right audience, I’m going to quickly go through how to do this below.

Marketing is a science not an art, despite what many people might say. Instead of trying to create the perfect marketing channel, you should instead be testing, tweaking and improving to make the most of each one and then re-invest into the successful ones. This is a fine tuning technique, supercars for example take hundreds of thousands of hours to make, but once they are made they are respected for decades, normal cars take a long time to make, but in a year no one cares…. Invest into 1 awesome marketing channel ONCE you have tested the waters.

To target your audience is easier than you might think, you don’t need to read any marketing books although I would recommend Guerilla Marketing, but if you don’t want to read it then just remember this – Emphasize with your target audience, where would they be, what would they think, get into their shoes and you will be surprised how easy it is to find customers. Don’t copy the competition. Think outside the box and where your customers will be!

Poor MarketingLame Marketing

Lame marketing is marketing that doesn’t generate sales. Just because a marketing method might work for another company, doesn’t mean its going to work for you. Also one that doesn’t work for the competition might still work for you. The difference is how effectively and extensively the researched and tweaked their process. TV advertising is the lowest ROI form of marketing available, yet literally billions are spent on it every single year? Why is that? Because people expect to see Coke, Audi and the huge brands advertising here and if they don’t then its bad for the brand image, but for sales and the ROI of the company it would actually be good!

11 One Sentance Tips for Ranking in Google

This is going to be a quick breakdown talking about the main tips for improving rankings in Google. This isn’t complicated stuff, as SEO really is common sense. But below are 11 tips I would recommend to almost all website owners. Whether this is an ecommerce site, a local business or a global corporate brand. I hope you enjoy the list.

  1. Image alt tags – Google can’t read images and the text inside your alt tags tells google what your image is about. If these are blank or irrelevant you are losing an opportunity to put your keywords in here.
  2. Image size – Larger images take longer to load and Google has come out and stated that load speed is a direct ranking factor. Reduce images sizes before uploading to a website.
  3. Load speed – Make sure your website is extremely fast. Trim the fat from the website and remove any unnecessary videos and images on a page.
  4. H1 Tags – Inside your H1 tags you should include your primary keywords, as well as a catchy tagline to attract visitors or improve conversions. Write for both users and search engines, not one of the other!
  5. H2-H4 Tags – Although less powerful than H1s, H2-4s have a big impact for ranking secondary keywords. Ensure you place your secondary keywords inside H2 tags, this will really help your organic traffic reach.
  6. Meta Description – Your meta description doesn’t directly effect rankings, so you shouldn’t look to use keywords for the sake of it. Instead write a meta description for the user that will “win the click”. This means you will get a higher CTR from the serps and as a result more visitors!
  7. Videos Help Rankings – This one I learnt from the team at HQ SEO Cardiff, they state embedding videos on your website help rankings due to the nature of the users and serps. They are also great for conversions anyway.
  8. XML Sitemaps – Once you have your website built you should submit your sitemap to Google search console. This allows Google to crawl your site and index the pages and posts you want indexed as quickly as possible.
  9. Social – Social accounts not only are great for your brand and business in general. But they also help give your new posts and pages relevance and “power” although tweeting or facebooking a post is technically not a backlink, it does help say to Google that the content is relevant and high quality as its getting high quality social signals.
  10. External Links – Linking out to high quality, relevance sources throughout your article if very important. Google sees this as a sign of trust and as a result will reward your website with higher rankings. There have been countless tests for this and all point to the sites that link OUT also rank higher.
  11. Internal Backlinks – Backlinks are still a huge percentage of rankings. Although Google might want to get away from having backlinks as such a heavily focused element for rankings, this is a long way away. Instead they are going to have to stick with it for now. As a result, one of your primary aims should be to acquire high quality backlinks, there are hundreds of ways to do this, simply search for the ones that work!

Top Small Business Marketing Blogs

Top Small Business Marketing BlogsWhen you get started in business you know 2 things. 1.) You will work hard and your gonna succeed by any means necessary. 2.) You don’t have a lot of time (and/or) money to input. For most people they don’t have a small loan of a million dollars they can implement into their businesses. Instead they have a small amount to invest and a little more time they can use to build the business in the early days.

I highly advocate outsourcing when you have the funds to do so, but until then I’m not going to pretend its possible! Instead I thought I’d write a quick post on the top 3 small business marketing blogs I use to keep up to date with quality information about online, print, creative and other marketing methods. There are other more famous marketing blogs than the ones I’m going to outline below, but personally I find if they have too large a following the methods are less effective. The information is usually more generic and not outlined in a step-by-step format.

Guerilla Marketing - Jay CLA quick note before we get started, if you haven’t already read Guerilla Marketing by Jay Conrad Levinson this should be your first port of call. Jay is an expert at outlining usable marketing strategies for start-ups, small businesses and any business that is run by an individual who doesn’t want to go down the generic advertising route, which nowadays no-one should!

Jay talks about how you can create a highly profitable business from smart marketing, both online and offline. Personally I found this book awesome to come up with ideas (outside of the internet) that could make my business money. Although so much budget is given to online marketing nowadays, we forget that people don’t “live” online (despite what people might tell you.) Instead we are still selling to people who are going to go home at the end of the day, if you can create a personal message and reach them then you will 100% be on the way to the top of your industry / niche.

1.) Marketing Donut

Marketing Donut is an established 10 year old platform of information for small businesses. This information is 100% free. MD make their money through advertising, which means they can put extra effort into creating timeless guides for their readers. This is a great place to start if you haven’t a clue what to do when it comes to your marketing plan. As well as marketing, the MD also have guides on digital, design, sales, accounting, research and PR. All range from beginner ideas and tactics to more advanced ones to explode the sales of a business.The Marketing Donut

2.) MyLocal Services Blog

My local services is a business directory based in the UK, they also have an active business forum and multiple guides on tax, design, small business marketing tips and much more. The community is very active and if you can’t find a specific answer on this somewhere I would recommend simply asking in the forum itself, you will get an answer in as little as a couple of hours usually.

3.) Small Business UK

Smallbusiness.co.uk is (as the name suggests) the place for UK small business owners to learn, connect, develop and grow their businesses. Whether you have a online business or a physical products business you can find useful information here about how to scale and grow your business. The marketing information is extremely specific, for example if you own a gym, you will be able to find an article written by a gym owner, for a gym owner, the same is the case for many bigger industries. For example there are a number of great web design articles which is great for someone looking to grow their web design agency, such as myself.

I hope you will read through these 3 blogs as they can seriously help grow your business. They are more for the established small business, so if you have been trading for a year or so but need some ideas on how to grow your customer or client base, then I highly recommend having a good research session. 1 key element to remember is that reading a blog full of tactics will do absolutely nothing for your business, they key is implementing these ideas and techniques, don’t look for the “Perfect” tactic, because it doesn’t exist! Start with something and you can also tweak and change it later on to improve conversions!

Thanks for reading, remember to share and comment!

Creating Your Budget – Marketing Vs Legal

In late 2015 we took to the metaphorical streets to ask smart business owners where they spend their money. How do you create a budget and most importantly what you spend your budget on. People were extremely helpful but one thing became very clear; Marketing and Legal fees had 2 extremes.

Some companies stated they spend over 50% of their entire funding or business budgets on marketing. Others stated the majority of their fees when on lawyers and solicitors.

Although it does depend on what niche and business you own, is there anyway to really know where to spend your budget, or how much you should be spending? This article is going to be our opinion on this.

Marketing vs Legal

Marketing VS Legal

So your budget is limited, do you spend most of it on legal fees or active advertising and marketing. I’ll give my opinions and then show you the responses of the other business owners that gave us detailed answers.

I would spend the majority of my budget BUILDING a marketing or branding division of my own company. This is a  little bit “out there” as a response but I think active brand management is needed. Most of the time you hear people offering advertising services, social media marketing, paid marketing campaigns but it all comes down to one thing, which is getting your brand in front of potential customers and clients. If I can do this in a cost effective way, I will have a successful business PERIOD.

That is where the majority of my funds are going. As well as this I’d spend a good proportion on start-up legal advice and contracts. If you have everything set-up well from the start (from a legal point of view) there is no reason to be worried or spend more money at a later time for ongoing legal advice, or even civil or court cases! Which as everyone knows can destroy a business single handedly!

Business Owner 1 – Anonymous

I believe that if you want to grow your business as fast as possible then marketing is the only thing you need. You don’t even need to worry about everything else. The issue? This is reckless and not a long term business strategy. Ever heard of the guy who never consulted a lawyer but made a billion dollar business? No me neither!

Personally I would spend at least 5-10% of my budget on constant legal advice, things like trademark infringement always go missed, but if you have a good solicitor firm actively looking for these things, you will get your money back and more through either settlements, legal action or sales that should have been yours in the first place!

 

Business Owner 2 – Dan from Garage Shelving

We own what’s generally referred to as a business in a boring but needed industry. One where repeat business isn’t very common. As if our racking breaks for whatever reason, then why would you come back to the same company? This means we need a big influx of NEW business and customers as frequently as possible. This is where our marketing campaigns become so important. Most people think that you shouldn’t spend too much on advertising or marketing. I say you can’t afford not to!

It’s all down to the return on investment, what’s the point of not spending more money if every £5 spent = £7… You’re losing money by not actually advertising more. Sure your profit might only be equal to the amount you spend but you get more people through the doors and then you allow word of mouth marketing!

That’s all folks!

Why Direct Marketing Works

Direct Marketing is one of the marketing strategies which are effective in making a sale. There are so many networking companies who incorporate into direct selling because they know that even if somehow, there are clients who could not afford to buy a package and still went into retailing. Through direct marketing, they can sell in retail and still become profitable for the company. Direct marketing is a selling tool that works and helps the companies to have a sale through the network of people and giving them a percentile of a profit which enable them to earn their income.

direct mailing

Direct marketing works because this is a selling strategy wherein people would come and reach their customers through messaging them directly. We used this strategy through leaflet designers in Essex. There are varieties of tools they can use in order to reach people and the most common now is the use of social media. Network marketing could be done online through sending an email and messages through the internet. Seller would check where the effective market for their items is. They come into a more saturated area where there are lots of people who are coming in and out. It gives them the possibility of gaining potential customers through advertising on the internet. It uses a unique attack in marketing which gets the attention of some people through their catching introduction. Success stories are one of the attacks that possibly may use in the scenario. People can be easily hook up and inspire with the stories of some successful people who went into same situations and able to make it on top.

Also check your not breaking any rules in your area when you are sending these flyers/leaflets. When we ran our campaigns we used Parker Bullen Salisbury. They assured us we wouldn’t see any negative ramifications from the campaign, so we went ahead and 10 days later we had 2 new clients. Easy!

Reaching specific target would be the most challenging one in direct marketing. You can be creative in your own way and could make your own portfolio for your strategy to be effective. Acknowledgement is very important. People want to be appreciated even in their little ways. This is the most effective way to employ more people in your company to do direct marketing for you. As they say that appreciations motivate and drive people to become more active and exert more effort in their ways in order for them to excel. Direct marketing becomes one of the effective ways to reach out on different kinds of people. You are able to make your attacking marketing lines and you can directly assess if they can be your potential client. You can build a direct positive relationship with your client and make them feel that they really matter to you.

Direct marketing is a tough one. You should have the character to possess in order to adjust on different kinds of people you will be encountering in your daily lives. You can encounter nice and rude people and you should maintain the professionalism that is in you. There are lots of people who make their success story through direct marketing. It only takes guts to start into penetrating large market of people. Along the way if you really enjoy doing it so, you can be successful in this marketing strategy.