Importance of Marketing

You always want your business to flourish in some way. You will be trying hard to accomplish this task. You may even launch new products and services that are really useful to the people. You will be doing this in order to gain better attention from the potential customers and also the competitors in the same business field. You may be going down in one place or other and most probably it will be in the selection of appropriate marketing criteria. It is widely revealed through various statistical studies that you will have to make use of all modes of marketing in order to excel in the business. Just one method is not enough to reach greater position. It may not be possible for you to manage all modes of marketing under one roof mainly because of the limited budget. Also if it is a budding enterprise you may not be willing to manage different marketing team with different responsibilities. In this case, you can definitely outsource the marketing task to a third party company who will be able to accomplish all the responsibilities within your expectation. There are many third party companies functioning around the city that are taking up the marketing task as per the request from their clients. These companies are having required number of staffs and they are trained by the company in order to accomplish different tasks. The company will take the lead in approaching customers for the clients and fix the appointments with them.

It is said that sending formal emails to customers are not enough in order to get business. You should approach directly in order to get some gains from them. Tele sales marketing is also carried out by the companies in order to tell directly to the customers regarding the new products and services offered by the clients. As a result the customers will get a felling of sincerity from the part of clients. The companies will also conduct various road shows and campaigns in order to deliver the news of the new services and products to the public. The clients can choose the service packages according to their need and budget from the company. The company will do the job correctly through prior planning and with timely execution of all the activities in accordance to the plan.

Marketing Plan for Franchisors Selling Franchises

If you are in business, any business, you need to have a plan for selling your product or service. In the case of franchises, the business owner has decided to sell a license to essentially replicate the business that they have successfully built for themselves. The sales and marketing techniques used for their original product or service are not likely to be the same as what will work for selling their franchise opportunity. So, what should be considered in a marketing plan for franchisors who are selling their franchises?

Analysis of Prospective Franchisee

Every franchisor is looking for certain unique qualifications in people/businesses that buy their opportunity. For candidates to be considered at all, their financial capability must be sufficient. Certainly an entrepreneurial spirit, to a greater or lesser degree, is important. Sometimes, not all that often frankly, a certain level of experience in the industry is important. The best franchises have also identified the personality traits that are most often successful for their franchisees. Those who haven’t seem to have a lesser degree of success with their franchisees. There is no reason not to have spent the time determining those personality traits. There are many different tests available such as Myers Briggs, DISC and many others. Some franchises have their own aptitude/personality test developed.

Marketing to the Right Prospect

Once the parameters have been determined, a successful marketing plan needs to be directed to the people who fit those parameters. That is not always the easiest thing to do. Even so, there are several directions that can be simultaneously taken to market to the correct prospect.

Franchise Brokers: Experts in franchise brokering can make a very significant difference in a franchisor’s marketing success, if the brokers are given all of the information they need. However, choosing “experts” may not be the easiest thing. Not all brokerage companies understand the personality requirements, for instance. On the other hand, some routinely administer their own tests in addition to those you require. They are much more likely to provide only high quality candidates. You’ll want to look at cost vs. return on that investment. Most always, the cost is only incurred when a franchise is sold to the proper candidate.

Traditional Media: Newspapers, radio and even television in targeted geography can still have a positive impact, if properly planned. Certain industry magazines, newsletters, etc. should also be investigated. Every effort should be made to include as much of the candidate criteria as possible in the ads. Unlike the case with brokers, the cost is incurred whether or not the advertising is successful.

Online Advertising: I’ve seen many franchise opportunities marketed on the internet on sites where 99.999% of the people searching those sites are looking for a job. Furthermore, the advertisements don’t make any attempt at pre-qualifying the prospect. This results in less than 1% of the people responding being anywhere close to the right candidate. My recommendation is to target sites that you know are visited by entrepreneurs and clearly state the minimum requirements in the ads. Of course, the response rate will be less, but the percentage of qualified candidates will be much greater.

That’s not all that can be done on-line, however. On-line marketing can be extremely successful and efficient if done properly. A certain amount of time and effort should be directed to learning the techniques most suited to the franchisor’s business and budget. In fact, great success can be achieved on a very minimal budget in many cases. I encourage all franchisors to spend the time to become expert in this media.

Marketing Message: 6 Characteristics Shared by Prospects in All Industries

“My prospects are different.”

Every time I hear this claim my ear drums rattle.

These words were recently uttered to me again by a business owner who asked for help rescuing a direct-mail campaign that initially generated zero responses from his prospects.

After one look at his marketing piece, it was clear he did little to address his prospects’ problems. Instead, he focused on a traditional pitch for his services.

The truth is your prospects may have different desires related to your product or service, but the characteristics that lead to a sale are the same regardless of your target audience.

1. Your prospects are skeptical.Just like you, they’ve thrown away money on promises that never panned out. You gain an instant advantage when you establish yourself as a credible source who understands what it’s like to walk in your prospects’ shoes.

2. Your prospects want direction.If they understood how to eliminate their problems, they would have never started searching for solutions. So don’t hesitate to share a little knowledge and give detailed instructions about what steps to take next.

3. Your prospects don’t like sales pitches.Unnecessary pressure makes sales pitches repulsive. But you make your message welcome when you focus on educating, establishing trust and involving your prospects in your marketing efforts.

4. Your prospects are already inundated with messages.Your copy is just another collection of claims unless you do something to prove your promise — and make your marketing message memorable. Don’t hesitate to try an approach that’s different from your competition.

5. Your prospects are afraid of the unknown.If you don’t clearly communicate what happens after moving forward with your offer, then your prospects are less likely to respond. So use your writing to help them visualize what it’s like to work with you or use your product or service.

6. Your prospects have an internal timeframe for coming to a buying decision.You can’t determine how long it takes your prospects to gather information, analyze the data and pull out their wallets — that decision is based on personal comfort. However, deadlines will often speed up the process.

Small Business Marketing – 9 Work ‘On’ Your Business Ideas To Stimulate Growth

Running a business requires you to wear many hats, be in numerous places at once, and keep multiple balls in the air. Not only must you keep up with the rigorous demands of working ‘in’ your business, if your goal is to build a solid, valuable business, you must also continuously work ‘on’ your business.

Marketing is one of those things that could be considered working on your business. In fact, marketing is quite possibly the MOST important working on your business activity you could be doing. This is mainly because without marketing, it’s extremely difficult to get new customers. Without marketing, it’s extremely difficult to get more business out of your existing customers. In other words, without marketing you won’t be in business for very long.

So what kinds of things should you be doing to continually market your business and keep it moving along?

Here’s a quick list to give you some things to think about:

1. Creating and sending out marketing campaigns (postcards, letters, flyers, etc.)

Marketing is a year round activity. In order to keep a constant flow of customers coming to your business, you need to be constantly presenting prospects with your products or services. Sending postcards, letters, or flyers is a great way to build name recognition that will keep a steady stream of prospects flowing your way.

2. Creating and sending a newsletter, ezine, or other communication to your existing customers

The biggest reason a large majority of customers leave a business is not due to poor service, an error, or some other misunderstanding. Believe it or not, the biggest reason customers leave a business results from feelings of apathy. They just don’t feel like the business would know one way or another if they left or not.

In order to stop these feelings of apathy from happening, you need to find some way to maintain contact with your existing customers. A monthly newsletter or weekly ezine are excellent ways to keep in contact and remind them how valuable they are to your business.

3. Creating new ‘widgets’ or packages you can present to new or existing customers

One key to building a solid, long-term business is to continually sell to your customers. If all you’re doing is finding new customers, you’re leaving boat loads of money on the table.

In order to keep selling to your existing customers, it’s critical you continually present them with new products, services, and offers. Creating new ‘widgets’ out of your existing offerings is a great way to repackage what you already sell.

4. Putting together valuable offers for presenting these ‘widgets’ to your new or existing customers

You need something to motivate your prospects and customer to buy and there are few things more effective at this than presenting them with valuable offers. Don’t just list the services you offer. Present them in a way that excites, interests, and motivates them to take action.

5. Writing articles to submit to local newspapers to enhance your status as the lawn care expert

People love to work with experts because it’s easy to put your trust in their knowledge and experience. While you are most likely already an expert in the services you provide, if no one knows it you’ll have to work twice as hard to demonstrate just how knowledgeable you are.

Writing articles for your local newspaper or other publications is an excellent way to quickly establish yourself as the local expert. The buying public puts a lot of stock in what they read in the paper and when they see your company name next to an article about your field of expertise, you’ve bridged a gap with your prospects and customers that will make selling your services infinitely easier.

6. Calling current customers to make sure they’re satisfied with your service

As sad as it is, customer service is almost non-existent in today’s marketplace. The simple act of picking up the phone to call your customer and find out if they’re satisfied will go a long ways towards creating a lasting the relationship.

7. Meeting with other service providers, not competitors, about forming a joint venture

The most difficult part of marketing is capturing the attention of qualified prospects. All around you are businesses providing services to the exact customers you’re trying to reach. Getting in touch with these other businesses about doing some cross-marketing is an excellent way to effectively get in front of countless prospects that you may not be able to reach otherwise.

8. Performing service or charity work in order to create some goodwill for your company’s name

Just as people love to work with experts, they also love to work with people that are about more than just making money. Performing service or charity work within your community is a powerful way to build a reputation as a company that gives back to others. When your customers and prospects see this, it builds goodwill that will carry over to increased business and profits for you.

9. Learning about direct marketing in order to enhance your knowledge and ability to better market your business

Even more important than providing your product or service is learning how to market your business. With no new customers, you won’t have anyone to provide a product or service to. That’s what makes learning HOW to market your business vitally important to your ability to reach the goals you’ve set.

Here’s a list of 9 different things you could be doing to help move your business forward. Each one of them individually will surely create positive results. However, done together the results will be phenomenal and you’ll soon reap the benefits of these working ON your business activities.

Want to Be Your Own Boss? Consider the Direct Sales Business

For years, the direct sales business has been a popular way for women to make a part time or full time income by selling products that appeal to a certain demographic. In recent years men have also embraced the business opportunities available in the direct selling industry.

It is no surprise that direct selling is so popular. After all, with several companies to choose from offering just about any product imaginable and so many different ways to market the business, a direct sales business can be tailored to fit just about any interest not to mention any budget. Home decor, jewelry, clothing, makeup, toys, books, clothing, candles and even gourmet food, you name it, there is most likely a business available to fit your interests.

Home Party Plans Evolved
In the early days, there were limited ways to earn money not to mention only a handful of companies to choose from. Sales were mostly generated from going out and doing home parties, gathering orders and hoping to get bookings to expand your customer base. These days there are several ways to market a successful direct sales business. Home parties as well as catalog parties are still popular. However, with the popularity of the internet many women can find success by building their online. In fact, many involved in direct sales do very few, if any home parties at all.

Every company is different, but many offer their reps a website (either free or with a small monthly fee). Company websites are generally set up as a way to allow their reps to build a customer base as well as introduce the business opportunity to others, which can potentially increase your earnings even more. Some websites are even set up with shopping carts so that customers can place orders, giving the rep an immediate commission. If a rep is with a company that offers consumable products, such as gourmet food then they may even build up a base of customers who will order directly from their website on a regular basis.

Social Media Marketing: A Few Random Tips To Super-Charge Your Campaigns

To embark on a successful social media campaign, many things have to be in place, it’s a case of many different but related activities coming together to play out for a singular goal. You want to hit the ground running? Then an actionable plan is needed, this will help you to always stay on course in the midst of social media noise that tends to obscure your presence. With the right strategy, you can begin to cut through the noise to see which one is for you and which one deserves less attention to be able to drive efficiency in your campaign.

By so doing, you are able to understand your target audience better and can easily get them into productive discussion and engagement as you forge a direction for your business. This article will touch on different social platforms and how you can improve your efforts on them to better your social marketing. These are not holistic but rather random social media marketing tips to supercharge specific areas of your social media marketing campaign.Here we go,

Follow Or Favorite All People Retweeting Your Article To Connect Further

The people sharing your posts on Twitter deserve to be given special attention if you want to harvest their interest in your business. Put it into perspective, it takes a firm interest in what other users have tweeted about for me to retweet them into my tweets stream. The people retweeting you are definitely deriving value from your content barring those that do so for attraction sake. Just by monitoring mentions of your username ( a tool like SocialMention.com could be very handy), you can find the people who are interested in the posts you share, and then quickly follow them or favorite their tweets. From my experience, I have discovered that the number of retweets and favorites on my posts on Twitter are coming from the same set of people every day, save my new followers. What I do is to find out who they are and try to engage them further in conversation through direct messages, I also start mentioning them in my tweets when appropriate. Don’t be surprised to find out that, out of an average of 30 retweets and favorites garnered by your posts on Twitter every day, 15 are coming from the same people.

You can also use a Twitter search to find people who aren’t mentioning you by username, type in your full name, website’s name or URL and any specific keywords or hashtags that you use. When you find out the people who are engaging the matching tweets, send them a reply or just favorite their tweets if you don’t have much time.

Mind Your Use Of @[username] In Tweets

It all comes down to understanding what the use of this great Twitter feature means in a tweet. Your use of @[username] could singlehandedly restrict who can see your tweets if placed in a wrong place, and this is a mistake that people make all the time on Twitter. Let’s take a look at how your tweets reach is affected by the use of someone’s Twitter handle:

What happens when you post three different kinds of Tweet to mention @pacespot as follows:

@pacespot is a great personthis tweet will only be visible to Yourself, Pacespot, and only your Followers who also follow Pacespot

What a great person! @pacespotthis tweet will be visible to Yourself, Pacespot, and all of your Followers

.@pacespot is a great personthis tweet will be visible to Yourself, Pacespot, and all of your Followers

What this tells you is that, if you are mentioning someone in a tweet that you intend to go far, make sure to add something before the @[the person's username], it can just be a period, comma, or any character. When you start a tweet with @-mentioning someone without adding anything before it, you are telling Twitter to restrict the reach of the tweet to only You and the person mentioned, but anyone who happens to follow both of you will also see the conversation. So, avoid starting tweets about your business with @ if you want to reach out to your followers – the best idea is to only mention someone at the end of your tweet rather than the beginning.

Of course, anyone who visits your Twitter profile can find whatever kinds of tweets you have posted; this is only concerned with getting your tweets into the timelines of all your followers.

Grow Your LinkedIn Network With Right People

LinkedIn has proven itself to be the largest haven of professionals online where people are fully alerted to business opportunity. There is no better place to nail down your business than here and everything starts with building the right networks. After you have set up your full LinkedIn profile, you can quickly broaden your horizon by connecting to people with large networks who also have something in common with your business. This can be a bit challenging right? Well not really, you can make the job easy by networking with them first through other social platforms, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, since it’s easier to connect with anyone on these channels, particularly on Twitter. You can follow them, send them tweets or mention them, just to gain some attraction and get them following you back. Then, send direct messages inviting those who follow back to connect on LinkedIn.

Another option is to join the relevant LinkedIn groups they are in to connect with them, you can send messages as a fellow group member to them, but be aware you are limited to 15 messages per month.

Another way of getting these popular LinkedIn accounts as your connections is to send paid InMails directly into their inbox, but you have to upgrade to a premium account to do this. Better still, if you’re lucky to get their email address, you can send your personal invitations. The whole idea about these is being able to strike some conversations before inviting them to be your connections since it’s becoming more challenging to send personalized connection requests directly on LinkedIn.

Actually, getting the connection from anyone on LinkedIn is not something that has its rules etched in stone, these are just general guidelines that could help you know how to go about it. What would be more beneficial to your LinkedIn marketing strategy is to figure out who are the right people to connect with. This is why you should consider installing LinkedIn Chrome Extension to manage your LinkedIn better; this will reveal more information about the size of someone’s network to you, to know who you should connect with.

You can read similar article about LinkedIn through the link in the resource box below – discover how to unravel the potential of LinkedIn for your content marketing effort

Direct Marketers – Use Ethical Selling Techniques to Close More Sales Starting Today

If you sell a product through direct marketing and you are interested in turning up your rate of return, then this is the article for you. Read on to find out how you can turn your business from an amateur operation into a small empire by using ethical sales techniques.

Many direct marketers just focus on their list and trying to tweak their sales message so that they can make a higher conversion rate each time they send out their sales letter. The fatal flaw with this approach is that you are only trying to sell to that customer one time. Once they have made the sale, they take the customer off of the prospect list and go try to find another buyer. The problem with this is that you are getting rid of your best prospects each time you start over. It’s much easier to sell to a customer that already buys from you instead of trying to find a whole new customer each time. It’s a lot cheaper too.

This is where ethical selling can really help your direct marketing business. By using direct marketing, you can take your current customers and maintain contact with them. Perhaps you send them a monthly or weekly newsletter offering a useful, free tip. This keeps your name in the mind of the prospect. You can couple these tips with new product offerings and solutions as you develop them. Your customer will get used to your frequent contact, and if you do it correctly they will actually look forward to it.

Once you have established this form of communication with your customers, you will no longer be just a marketer trying to push some products. Now you will have established a relationship with your customer. You will become a friend to them, someone they can ask for advice in your particular niche. Yes, this is more work to maintain than just getting rid of customers as you get them, but it costs a lot less than trying to acquire new customers all the time.

As you use ethical relationship-building methods on your prospects you will also find that price will no longer be as much of a concern. They are not looking elsewhere for a better deal. They trust you and will stay your customers until you do something that will change their mind. Try ethical sales the next time you start a direct marketing campaign and see how much better your business will be.

Tips and Tricks for Building an Effective Direct Mail Marketing Campaign

To begin your direct mail campaign, break down the process into manageable steps and take these factors into consideration. Here are some questions to ask yourself.

Who is your target audience?

The first step is to identify your company’s target audience, or target audiences, and understand these demographics as well as possible. The more knowledge you have of their purchasing habits, needs, and wants, the more effective your direct mail campaign will be in helping them understand how your business can benefit them. Are your clients male or female? Old or young? Where do they live? The more detailed, the better. Look at the demographics of your existing customer base, but also imagine what other customers you might want to reach out to. Who uses your services, and who could use your services?

Who is on your mailing list?

Once you have a good understanding of your current and prospective clients, create a mailing list. Better yet, create different lists for different campaigns; the material you send to existing customers might look different and contain different information than that which you send to potential customers. The more tailored your pamphlet, postcard, flyer, etc. is to the specific recipient, the better the chance he or she will respond positively, if at all. Keep detailed and organized records of your lists for reference when creating future campaigns.

What do you want to say? How are you going to say it?

Now it’s time to design the actual promotional material that you will send out. There are many types, including postcards, flyers, and pamphlets explaining your services and detailing special offers. Thank you cards and greeting cards for previous clients are just as important; they’re instrumental in fostering a sense of community and letting customers know how much you value them and their business. After all, one of the principal reasons people respond so well to direct mail marketing is that it’s more personal than electronic communication. Identify which types of mail you will be sending to which people and the text to include. Make sure to double-check spelling and grammar.

Next, focus on the visuals. Pictures are crucial. If you are a company that sells home products for elderly customers, include photos of people making it clear just how easy-to-use your products are. Other businesses, like law firms and real estate companies, traditionally utilize photographs of lawyers, agents, etc. because they are businesses that rely on personal, one-on-one trust. Make sure whatever pictures you choose are high-quality and professional.

Graphic design plays a crucial role in representing your business as well. If your material appears outdated or aesthetically displeasing, you jeopardize the perceived reliability and quality of your company, which can greatly affect business. If you have no experience in graphic design, it is best to leave it to professionals. Some direct mail services offer in-house graphic designers.

With these tips in mind, you will be off to a great start designing an effective direct mail marketing campaign!

Direct Mail Copywriters: Direct Marketing Consulting Rocks!

Finding really good direct mail copywriters can be very tricky and in this article I want to give you 12 points to look out for when you’re choosing a writer for your business.

Remember that a great writer can make the difference between success and failure so don’t leave this stuff to chance.

Let’s begin…

1. Your writer should be able to write for ad campaigns, TV scripts and radio promotions. You need someone that is going to cover all the basses.

2. A good direct mail copywriter can also write your business brochures and booklets.

3. You should look for someone who takes a great deal of interest in what you are trying to achieve and can create a marketing theme around your needs.

4. Look for someone who can write sales scripts for your call center and customer service staff.

5. Look for good communication skills right from the start because your first communication will always be the best because they are trying to impress you.

6. Market research needs to be covered fully.

7. You should look for someone who can consistently come up with, and add to marketing ideas and slogans. You should set a test up before you hire someone.

8. The most important thing is that the person should be able to write a good headline because this will make or break your direct marketing

9. Ask you writer to think of up-sell opportunities.

10. Good direct mail copywriters should have an idea of design and layout to work with your graphics people.

11. Look for a person who is also willing to write your email follow up as this is all part of the direct mail picture.

12. Look for someone who can create copy templates making future marketing easier and faster. This will be a great asset for your business.

Good luck in your search to find the right direct mail copywriters to help your business grow.

I hope these ideas will benefit you.

Direct Mail Postcards – Converting Mails to Huge Investment

Direct mail postcards are a versatile form of marketing, serving small ventures as well as big brands. This tool also acts to increase your sales figure without investing a lump sum. Today, the development of information and technology has taken us to a stage, where we hardly need to write and go to post-offices or any courier services for mailing special letters or postcards. A modern online solution has offered this small investment to you and promises to give better results.

Some of the advantages of direct mail postcards are stated below:

  • This type of postcard has ample space for marketing message and becomes a success on most occasions.
  • The success rate of postcards can be easily tracked and the prospect of marketing goes better than in other options. The feedback can also be used for future marketing analysis.
  • There is a thorough research with the subject matter and you can easily tally the figures of sales that you attain from your marketing venture, without wasting much effort.
  • Developing a tough marketing strategy for a small amount seems wiser that investing in other tools.
  • Last but not the least, these postcards are cheap. Sending direct mail postcards through the mail is much more reasonably priced than others.

The present day communication techniques are far more sophisticated compared to the past few decades. In recent years marketing was totally confined to individualistic approach. But at present, modern and innovative marketing tools have greatly dominated this scene. Creating good impression about your business to the clients’ is essential to survive. Direct mail postcards are one of the finest and inexpensive forms of marketing channel, where we can easily grab the attention of any business. Moreover, to spread the presence to the global clientele, this tool has been considered to be the cost effective one, especially because we can view the updates regarding the present trends in the existing as well in the past market. This can easily maximize your potential to the related areas resulting in a better capital growth.

Some of these direct mail postcards, such as jumbo postcard, standard postcard, and double postcard are dominating the business segment and giving an honest feedback to the investors and entrepreneurs. This method of marketing is becoming more popular especially when the business strategies tend to save time. We can implement various online print services where direct mailing service by means of postcard, has become the best in this segment. Moreover, the addition of add-on facilities such as educational content, direct mail designing, mailing list consulting, and many others.

There are hardly few such marketing tools rewarding you with such information. No doubt, these postcards are definitely doing well for business promotion; sometimes some drawbacks come into light. This process of mailing and further research takes a lot of time. But it has turned out to be an effective medium to access the globe and develop healthy business relations within a short time.