Tag: marketing

15
Feb

Set Up Social Media Success in 6 Simple Steps

Social media doesn’t have to be daunting. In fact, it can be your best sales associate and your favorite marketing tactic. The key is to focus so you don’t get overwhelmed. It all begins with your message. Here are five steps to go from strategy to scheduled for social media success.

#1 Create Your Social Media Strategy.

For your Brand, you have a strategy. Now, align that with Social Media. Determine your niche—your target audience. Consider pain points and interests; and your solution for them. People seek solutions and benefits!

Brand strategy is a long-term plan for development to achieve specific goals. It is your playbook. Goals, strategies and tactics are outlined to give you a game plan.

Your brand is not your product, your logo, your website, or your name. It is much more than that. It is tangible and intagible, purpose driven, mission focused attributes that are your reason for being. It’s a feeling that separates powerful versus mediocre brands.

Your brand strategy considers:

1. Your industry & design trends
2. Your ideal client’s desires
3. Your brand personality

Distinguish your brand — how do you differentiate yourself and speak to your audience in a way that attracts them? There are many ways to give your brand a personality. From your logo and colors to tone of voice, messaging must align with your audience while remaining consistent in delivery style. Imagine your brand talking with one customer. And then, replicate that conversation consistently in the marketplace. This is where the social media strategy comes in.

Now, create a plan for social media that addresses your target audience where they are. Design a communication and messaging strategy to deliver information that is helpful to them and of interest. Relate to other topics that they are engaging with across platforms.

Check out this article of interest — Perfecting the four P’s.

HOMEWORK:

  1. Know what makes you different from your competition.
  2. Define your target audience and the solution you provide.
  3. Translate this to your Social Media strategy.

#2 Choose Your Social Media Platform(s).

You aren’t required to be on every Social Media platform to be successful. Pick one, possibly two to start. Avoid overwhelm!

In the beginning, fewer and BETTER is the focus. Facebook is the logical first choice for most brands. Twitter, LinkedIn, and/or YouTube are strong second choices, depending on your niche.

With Facebook, create your personal Profile then set up your Business Page. From quotes to images to video, you can dominate presence in your niche. Facebook Live amplifies the possibilites. You can benefit from low cost, highly targeted Facebook Ads to generate leads and build your list.

Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest along with LinkedIn and YouTube are great online real estate for your message. Your strategy will assit you in selecting the one or two places to start so that you speak to your tribe and align with your message.

To get a feel for the social media channels, check out this article of interest — Social Media at a Glance.

HOMEWORK:

  1. Set your goals — what you aim to accomplish.
  2. Select the Platforms you will use to START.
  3. Set up your social media sites.

#3 Curate and Create Your Content.

Develop an Editorial Plan to guide your content with purpose. And then you can repurpose the information across your social media channels. This reinforces your presence.

Create a calendar — three, six, nine, or 12 months out. For each month, brainstorm themes and then topics within that theme that would be of interest to your audience. Look at information that will establish you as the “Go To” person in your arena.

Choose themes and topics so you can weave information from one post to another. Look at the map of content so you know what you are sharing each and every day. Content can easily be “re-purposed” and used in a variety of ways, and across multiple platforms.

For more insights, check out this article — Repurpose Key Twitter Posts.

HOMEWORK:

  1. Brainstorm content theme ideas.
  2. Outline topics of interest to your niche.
  3. Create a 30 day content editorial calendar.

#4 Create a Series of Messages.

Now comes all the write stuff. Tailor the words to fit the channel. A blog post can be pulled apart for fodder you can upload to Twitter or Facebook. Specific messages can be developed for each channel and your audience there. If you desire assistance with this, let me know.

Now, get going. Check out this article of interest — Pretty Perfect.

HOMEWORK:

  1. Write your message(s).
  2. Develop content tailored to each channel.
  3. Consider quotes that align with your message.

#5 Select Message Visuals.

There are a number of ways to deliver information—your brand strategy will assist you in selecting the style(s) best suited to your message.

Photos; Infographics; Videos (Live and Native); Blog Posts and Original Articles by you; White Papers; Blogs and Useful Articles by other thought leaders in your niche who do not compete. Make Video a priority as it gets the MOST engagement!

Once you determine the style of information delivery, create your content. Outline it. Find photos and images to add impact. Consider using Piktochart or Canva to create images and infographs. Look at Notegraphy for creating impact with your words. And, find free photos and images at Pixabay.

Check out this article of interest — A Picture Worth 1000 Words.

HOMEWORK:

  1. Consider your brand image and align visuals with that.
  2. Create your message visuals.
  3. Develop content across visual media.

#6 Schedule It.

Effective Social Media Marketing can be done in 30 minutes a day when you have a plan and you WORK that plan.

You can use tools such as Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule your posts in advance. This puts your social media presence on autopilot.

Check out this article of interest — Storytelling and the 3 T’s.

HOMEWORK:

  1. Schedule posts for 30 days—consider Hootsuite or Buffer.
  2. Check in every day for 30 minutes to boost activity and interact with your tribe.
  3. Share posts from others who attract your niche.

Define your brand strategy and your message. Choose which delivery method will be best for your message. Make a list of themes and topics of interest. Create your content. And schedule it.

Congratulations! You now have the steps required to command Social Media and dominate your niche for business awareness, lead generation, client contact, and nutured relationships that lead to SALES! For assistance in creating your content, get in touch with me.

3
Jul

Meaningful Marketing Messages

Make your marketing message meaningful—in every way. To do this, every time, begin with the customer

Know your audience. Your message for new customers might vary from that of a repeat customer. Reward loyal customers. Always make a returning customer feel they are being treated well. Word of mouth from a happy customer is your best marketing message.

…then follow these three C’s.

Keep your message clear, concise and compelling.

Make your benefit clear for your customer. Show them and tell them what your product or service can do for them. Answer your customers’ question: “What’s in it for me?” Tell it in a way that distinguishes your offer from all competitive options.

A concise message is to the point. In other words, don’t make your customers think. State your message in the most simple terms and in the most memorable way. Brevity will help memorability of your proposition.

Be compelling. Help the customer picture themselves receiving the goods or service. An image or a narrative can help them imagine selecting your offer and enjoying the benefits. Show the customer the “payoff” they will get by choosing your brand. Create contrast with other brands to amplify the point of difference your product or service provides. Contrast helps create value around your brand, giving customers a reason to choose you over a rival. And, it can help create a sense of urgency. Show it with a visual or paint a picture with words.

8
Jun

Positioning Your Product or Brand

Positioning is a facet of the marketing strategy that aims to give your product or brand a distinct perception—relative to competing brands—in the mind of the customer. An historic campaign for Avis reflects this: “Avis Is Only No. 2, We Try Harder.”

In developmental stages, determine the positioning you intend for your product or brand. Research and market feedback will help you discover if it is aligned with actual consumer attitudes. If not, then marketing messages can help close the gap or change perception.

Positioning is an art. Great positioning tells a compelling, attention grabbing story—a story that resonates with your audience.

Rebel Brown

The positioning process begins with identifying a market problem or opportunity, then developing a solution—often based on market research, segmentation and supporting data. Once positioning is determined, it will help align and guide marketing efforts and business objectives. The perfume I use is the indulgent scent for pleasure seekers. Thus, the tone and manner of messages, images, events and PR are created to consistently express this in all communication.

Again, positioning is the perception of your product or brand in the mind of the customer. Perception is reality. Aim to establish the highest and best use for your brand among your audience. And, be open to emerging alternate audiences, too. Here are some examples of common positioning strategies and how they might translate in the marketplace.

 

8
Sep

Perfecting the Four P’s

Essential to your marketing program success is alignment and integration of the “Four P’s” which are Product, Price, Positioning, Placement.

PRODUCT: It all begins with your product—that which you proffer. It could be a tangible item or it could be a service. Either way, it is important to define your product in terms of the problem it solves. For example, my Parfum lets me express myself in a scent and gives an aromatic influence to my day. It is designed, packaged, and presented to meet tangible and emotional needs.

PRICE: Next it is important to formulate your price. The value of your product to your customer is determined by weighing many variables. In addition to consumer factors, each of these need consideration:

  1. product costs—you will need to cover costs in order to have a viable offer
  2. profit target—what is the desired return you wish to achieve
  3. positioning among competitive options—how your product compares to other choices your customer could make to solve the same problem
  4. place of distribution—where your customer gets your offer is a frame of reference for pricing (i.e. convenience outlet, luxury venue, specialty store, etc.)

PROMOTION: This includes a range of activities to gain awareness for your product, to attract prospects and convert them to customers. This includes efforts at the trade and consumer levels: advertising, public relations, events, sampling, and collaborative offers among the possibilities.

PLACEMENT: Place of distribution can affect your overall marketing efforts. For instance my Parfum is available only via specialty stores so it is more expensive than an option I could find at the discount department store and the marketing message will need to deliver a promise of panache.

To best serve your marketing endeavors, the Four P’s need to be integrated and aligned. This will help focus marketing messages and determine other efforts to augment positioning (sometimes considered the 5th P, we touched on positioning briefly while considering facets of pricing). Positioning is how the customer sees your product among the options or solutions considered. The marketing mix must work to align customer perception with the desired reputation you wish to build for your product, brand or company.

26
May

A Bit About Twitter

Social media is on the rise, and it can be daunting. Here are a few tips to help build twitteraderie.

SET UP
Present your brand image consistently. Include images that are indicative of your business.

Header. The measurements of the Twitter header is at least 1500px x 500px and Twitter seems to render png files better with less loss of image quality, so create it as PNG.

Profile. Your profile image should be at least 210px square.

Be sure to include your website and a brief brand message.

THE MEDIUM THE MESSAGE

The primary Twitter audience is young adults. They are interested in news, text updates and links to information. Twitter is good for sharing original and curated content including links to interesting articles or blogs; quotes, industry news, announcements or newsletters, Vine or YouTube videos and event updates. Comments, shares and retweets are a good indication of efficacy.

For twitter, it is good to post daily and as often as hourly. It is reported that 22 tweets per day is optimal.

TWEET FODDER

Here are some idea starters for your twitter feed:

  • Post an event. Share a link to a conference, a webinar, a program of interest.
  • Created content. Link to your recent blog article with an attractive headline.
  • Reflection. Report on a lesson learned or Seen-&-Heard incident.
  • Imagery. Upload a photo worth 1000 words in this arena of 140 characters.
  • Curated content. Post a link to an article you find of interest.
  • Interact. A direct tweet using the @ sign can be a good conversation starter.
  • Retweet. Share tweets from others that you find of interest.

Images. It is good to include an image with your post. The optimal size for a photo uploaded to twitter post is 506px wide by 260px high.

Links. Place links about a quarter of the way through your tweet message for the highest click through rate.

While the length of a tweet is limited to 140 characters for easy consumption across mobile and text, it is best to keep your post between 70-100 characters. A report by Buddy Media revealed that Tweets shorter than 100 characters get a 17% higher engagement rate.

Be chipper. Be chirpy. Be choosy.

27
Apr

A Perfect Plan

A marketing plan begins with thinking. It is a process to help focus and guide efforts for optimal success with available resources—creating a strategic, integrated and consistent approach to the journey.

1) Understand your target market, competition and industry marketplace

Your Target Market. Who do you help and how do you help them? Spend time and thought crafting the perfect marketing message—that’s time well spent. At the heart of every compelling marketing message are two factors: Who do you serve? And, in what way, specifically, do you serve them better than any of their other options? Answer these two questions carefully, and the rest of your marketing message will flow so much more easily.

Take a look at all solutions your market has to turn to instead of yours. List strengths and shortcomings for each of these competitors. This will assist in answering how you serve the market better.

And, consider the marketplace. What are the trends? Outline opportunities such as new distribution venues or growing demand. And, consider the threats such as growing competition and demand dilution. Address how you will capitalize on opportunity and thwart threat.

2) Define your USP (Unique Selling Proposition)—your purpose, raison d’être

Here again we look at how you serve the market better than all other options. We boil it down to the core and then communicate it with clarity.

3) Develop your marketing messages and ensure the right people are targeted

The way you look has a lot to do with the way people look at you. What you say will make your day, and it will make someone else’s day too! More and more, advertising is becoming advertorial Content Marketing. It is about what you stand for, not what you sell. Informational needs of customers and prospects is the driver. It’s not a proposition, it’s a conversation.

4) Identify the best marketing mix—most appropriate, cost effective channels

Social media (and which venues), print, outdoor, cable television, events, and etc. are dynamic channels of communication that offer specific benefits and costs. Take a look and determine the “fat rabbits” to give you the biggest bang for your media buck.

5) Set out a month-by-month plan of action that schedules your tactical activities

Be consistent. Build your presence and amplify it. Plan around seasonal commemorations and themes, incorporating those that are appropriate. Be ready to adjust with current events and news.

Whether it’s to generate leads, find customers, drive website traffic or build your brand, let’s look at your target market, competitors and positioning then develop a strategy designed to consistently deliver the most compelling message to the right audience.

Set a plan and be ready to revise the plan as the playing field changes.