Mind The Marketing Gaps

Posted July 24, 2014 by jlsnell
Categories: Business, Marketing

Tags: , , , , ,

Guest Contribution By Bob The Teacher

It’s easy as an entrepreneur to focus your attention on the cutting edge of new technologies, marketing strategies, and the latest tools. I know that doing so keeps me on my toes and I love to share new things with others. But in that focus there’s a danger of missing the obvious ways to generate more revenue and profit in your business.

These are the marketing gaps that show up more and more in any business that continues to grow. The truth is there are always going to be new ways to make money in your business, new tools to learn, and new technologies to test out.

But forgetting the basics, overlooking the holes that get wider, and neglecting the golden goose: these are all ways that we are missing out (and that includes me!).

I challenge you to find the holes in your marketing and fill them.

Not with new ways of doing things, but the solid, proven things you already know how to do but have either forgotten that you know them, or simply have been putting them off for way too long.

This week, let’s talk about those gaps and how to fill them. I’m going to show you what gaps exist in my business, how I’m finding them, and what I’m doing over the next few weeks to patch up those holes.

These will be simple tweaks, but with powerful results that combine together to regain lost revenue and solidify long term profits.

Join the Mind The Gap Free Training

 

Sneak Peek: 7 Ways To Mind Your Marketing Gaps

Here are 7 ways you can mind your marketing gaps (these are what I’m focusing on, too):

    • Discover where traffic on your website is going that is not actually working (i.e., 404 error traffic)

 

  • Determine popular pages on your website that aren’t monetized at all, or could be monetized better

 

 

  • See which videos on YouTube are getting attention, but aren’t effectively monetized

 

 

  • Examining sidebar bloat

 

 

  • Replacing out of date websites with related but current marketing funnels

 

 

  • Optimize follow up sequences in Aweber by tweaking older messages

 

 

  • Add new messages to lists where the bulk of subscribers are at the end

 

These are just 7 examples that I’ll be diving deeper into in the upcoming training. Join me for those and many more in Mind The Marketing Gaps!

Bob The Teacher

p.s. What gaps in your marketing do you already know you want to fill? Post them below with a comment!

Color, Color, Everywhere & Their Meanings

Posted May 23, 2014 by jlsnell
Categories: Design, Marketing

Tags: , , , ,

color-emotion-guide Here’s a handy chart giving insight on what these popular brands had in mind when creating their logos. You can add this insight to your next creative project. Do you use color psychology in your branding?

Share your thoughts and experiences with your color choices.

Till next time…

7 Easy Photography Tips

Posted May 10, 2014 by jlsnell
Categories: Photography

Tags: , , ,

dog_with_paw_on_cameraKeep these basic photography tips in mind the next time you venture out on a photo adventure! Perfect for professional, amateur and recreational photographers.

Visualize : Keep a list of things you want to photograph and visualize how you want these photos to look. When you are ready to check a shot off of your list, you can plan ahead and have the details sorted out- time of day, season, relevancy, obstacles, etc. Consider all the elements needed to get that perfect shot!

Consider Color: There are endless possibilities in the colors of the rainbow. Color creates mood, emotion and power, so use it to your advantage!

Simplify: Make sure that background, props, edits and lighting do not distract from the focus of your photo! Keep it clean and simple to drive your vision home.

But Don’t Be Ordinary: Make your photographs demand a reaction. Get close to your subject for an awesome macro view. Try different angles to present a new perspective. And please, don’t plop your subject in the center of your photo.

Always Be “On”: Photo opportunities spring up unexpectedly throughout the day so be prepared! Always have a camera on you (even a simple camera phone) and capture those little moments that build big days.

Be Discrete: Keep your camera ready at hip height and adjust to take interesting candid photos, evoking true emotion from your subjects when they least expect it. This is a great way to document an event, gathering or special occasion among friends.

Keep Quantity: Shoot continuously. Take many photos in the now and worry about deleting and editing later. Your initial reaction to a photo may change. Don’t be too hasty in the moment! You might end up deleting a picture-perfect shot.

So there you have it! 7 easy photography tips that every photo-taker should keep in their camera bag. And if all else fails.. take a selfie! We have easy tips to perfect those too.

by

 

Brand Color 101: Go From Too Bright to Just Right in One Easy Step

Posted April 27, 2014 by jlsnell
Categories: Design, Marketing, Tutorials, Web design

Tags: , , , , ,
By Pamela Wilson

It’s a common mistake amateurs make when choosing brand colors, website colors,or even ebook colors.

Colors that are too bright.

Colors that looks like nothing that exists in nature. They’re loud, glaring, and they make our eyes hurt.

bright-color-swatches Ouch.

Why do bright colors make our eyeballs ache?

Bright colors reflect more light than their toned-down counterparts. They over-stimulate our eyes, and because of that, they can cause eye strain.

Bright Colors on Screens? Double Ouch.

It’s one thing to see bright colors printed on paper. But when they’re on a screen that is lit from behind rather than illuminated by ambient light, it’s even more jarring.

(Just try staring at the colors above for about thirty seconds. Look away at a blank surface right after, and you’ll see “ghost” color swatches. Your eyes are still trying to process the bright colors!)

That’s why it’s a good idea to tone down your colors to make them easier to look at, especially when you want people to spend time on your pages reading your information.

Because the last thing you want is to have pages that make people want to rub their eyes and click away.

Tone Down Your Brights with One Easy Step

It’s easier than you think to tone down your overly-bright hues, and you don’t have to be especially artistic to do it.

As a matter of fact, my favorite color palette creation software has a built-in tool that will help you tone down your colors. Just follow these steps:

1. Go to ColourLovers.com. This is my favorite site for choosing colors and creating palettes.

2. Look for the “Create” button on the right side of the page. Click on this button to get the dropdown menu. In the dropdown menu, choose “Palette.”

3. Click on the first rectangle and choose a color. Directly under “Create a Palette,” click on the first rectangle. Use the color selector below to choose a color.

bright-color-before

4. If the color is too bright, move the third slider down toward black. Edge it down until your color looks like it’s sitting the shade, instead of the bright sun! This will make it easier on your viewer’s eyes.

bright-color-after

The result after you add some “shade” to the colors at the beginning of this post?

These colors are still pretty bright, and you should use them in small doses. But they won’t send your website visitors running for the hills, rubbing their eyes as they go!

bright-color-swatches-toned-down

About Pamela Wilson: I’m an award-winning graphic designer and marketing consultant, and I’ve helped businesses of all sizes build their brands since 1987. Now I want to help you build yours.

 About Big Brand System: Your business may be small, but your brand can be BIG. Targeted, well-designed marketing materials — whether they’re in print or on the web — will help your business look professional, communicate effectively and sell more.

Till next time!

Joann

Getting Started With MailChimp’s Email Designer

Posted April 5, 2014 by jlsnell
Categories: Business, Design, Marketing

Tags: , ,

by 18 Mar 2014 mailchimp freddie wink

MailChimp is an email marketing tool that helps you design email newsletters, distribute them through managed lists, share them on social networks, integrate them with third-party services, and track email performance.

Assuming you are familiar with the basic steps to create and set up a campaign on MailChimp, this tutorial will show you the steps for using the MailChimp Email Designer tool specifically in order to help you build clean and mobile-friendly newsletters.

If you need more info on the basic steps, take a look at Mailchimp’s How can I create a campaign using the Campaign Builder? for further instructions.

Get Started

Either from your Dashboard or Campaigns tab, click the Create Campaign drop-down menu in the upper-right hand corner of your screen and select Regular Ol’ Campaign.

To read the rest of the tutorial click here

How to Prepare Your Business for Being Discovered By New Customers

Posted March 27, 2014 by jlsnell
Categories: Business, Marketing, Social Networking

Tags: , ,

How to Prepare Your Business for Being Discovered By New Customers
By Sydni Craig-Hart

These days, you never know how a new customer will hear about your business.

It can be in at a crowded industry event with 2,000 people, or it can be in a small café during a conversation between friends. It can also happen online — whether that’s through a post on Facebook, a question on Twitter, or a photo shared on Instagram.

Oftentimes, people won’t be searching for your business name when they find you.

Think about how you actually search for products and services online. You might type something into your browser like this:

Mexican restaurants in Berkeley, CA
Dog walker in Chicago, IL
Interior designer in Washington, DC
Landscaper in Los Angeles, CA
Kid’s Photographer in Atlanta, GA

Each time a search like this is performed, the prospective client is likely to discover a new business that they would have never known about without the convenience of the Internet.!

How you show up in the search engines is even more important if you have a “local” based business such as a restaurant, a boutique or any other kind of “brick and mortar” business.

One recent survey of smartphone users found that 75 percent have used a mobile device to get real-time location-based information.

This presents an exciting opportunity for you to attract new customers and do more business. But, it also means you need to be prepared so that you can keep them coming back!

Here are five things you can do to make sure you’re ready:

1. Make it easy for people to find your business.

Three areas you’ll want to focus on are: your website, social media, and listings.

If you’re unfamiliar with how any of these tools help you get discovered, these resources will provide the information you need:

5 Easy Ways to Turn Your Website Into An ATM
Step-by-Step Social Media for Smart Entrepreneurs
Making an Inventory of All the Places Customers Find You Online

2. Make sure the information they find is up-to-date.

When people do find your business online, you need to make sure the information they discover is accurate and up-to-date.

Your phone number and email address need to be accurate and current. Have your contact information available on every page of your site. Be sure to list your mailing address (or your physical address if you’re a brick and mortar business). Have your current service menu, price list and testimonials.

Make sure your site is always reflecting the latest and greatest in your business!

3. Provide a WOW experience that gets people talking.

When prospective clients arrive at your website or come through your door, you need to make sure you’re providing a memorable experience.

At every interaction your prospect should feel heard, understood and appreciated. Follow-up in a timely manner. Answer their questions. Be generous in sharing your expertise. Give them options for products and services that speak to their problems and are easy to say yes to.

Providing a WOW experience will turn first time customers into repeat customers and loyal advocates for your business.

4. Make it easy for your prospects to stay connected.

This could be as simple as sharing the links to your social media profiles on your website, or providing a sign-up form on your counter for people to join your email list.

Give them an incentive to share their contact information – offer a free gift, a discount, a sample – anything that is relevant and valuable to them.

Capturing their contact information and staying in touch will allow you to develop a trusted relationship, that will likely lead to a sale and ongoing business!

5. Follow up.

Once people have connected with you, it’s your responsibility to keep the conversation going.

Remember, it’s not their job to remember that you are in business to serve their needs.

Make sure you’re actually participating on social media, not just posting when you have something to promote. If you’re telling customers they’ll be receiving an email newsletter once a month, make sure you’re following through. Look for ways to bring them back into your store with a special offer or in-person event.

You need to build credibility and your audience needs to know you are serious and committed to your business.

Don’t wait to get started.

People are discovering your business every day.

If you want to turn those potential customers into repeat visitors and loyal advocates for your business, you need to be prepared!

………………………………………………………………………….

Sydni Craig-Hart, The Smart Simple Marketing Coach, is founder of SmartSimpleMarketing.com. Known for her easy, strategic and results-focused approach to marketing, she also has the unique ability to find untapped profit centers in her client’s businesses so they can create money NOW. Visit http://www.SmartSimpleMarketing.com for your FREE training course, “5 Simple Steps to More Clients, More Visibility and More Freedom” and apply for a FREE “Profit Breakthrough” session with Sydni!

Network Your Way to a More Profitable Business

Posted March 15, 2014 by jlsnell
Categories: Business, Marketing

Tags: , ,

people networkingNetworking. Love it or not, when done correctly, it’s one of the easiest and fastest ways to attract ideal clients and increase your revenue.

Entrepreneurs who don’t enjoy networking often feel that way because they have convinced themselves that they aren’t good at it. Another common reason for resisting in-person networking is that some haven’t enjoyed the results they expected.

Being effective at networking is certainly an acquirable skill. If it’s not one you currently possess, rest assured you can learn it with ease. If you happen to be great at networking, you’ll be happy to know that with a bit of ongoing effort you’ll continue to connect with ideal prospects and close more business.

So how does one go about using networking opportunities to create opportunities and attract ideal clients?  Following are seven simple tips that will put you on the fast track to success:

1. Understand what networking is REALLY all about – My friend Devora Zack, the author of Networking for People Who Hate Networking, defines the activity as “the art of building and maintaining connections for shared positive outcomes. That means that networking is about making connections with the people you meet. It is NOT about selling. Keep this in mind as you head into your next networking opportunity.
2. Don’t network just for the sake of doing so – Have a purpose and a goal! Choose where you spend your networking time wisely. Commit to ONLY attending events where you can connect with large groups of prospective clients or prospective referral partners. If neither of these groups will be in attendance, neither should you. Also, decide – before you even register – what your specific goals are for attending the event and set the intention that you will create the opportunities you are looking for.
3. Research who else is already gathering your ideal clients en-masse – Then, join that organization / association / club and start attending events. Get to know the group leaders and make yourself available as a resource. Volunteering is a great way to meet the members of the group and create visibility for your business. Also, remember to take full advantage of all of the benefits of your investment in the organization or the event. You’ll ONLY get out of it what you put into it!
4. Leverage your natural style when networking – This is an important point that I learned from Devora.  Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, you can be successful when networking. You will make it more difficult on yourself if you try to be something or someone you’re not.If you’re an introvert and feel like you have to “work the room,” you’re going to be completely uncomfortable and undermine your efforts to connect with others. If you are an extrovert and attempt to work against your natural tendencies, you may come off as “rehearsed,” which is not so attractive. So, learn to use your natural style to your advantage. Show up as your authentic self and be who you are. You’ll feel much more comfortable and enjoy far better results from your networking efforts.
5. Follow-up on ALL interest within 48 hours – This is imperative, and it’s where so many drop the ball! If you’re not going to follow-up with the folks you meet, there is no point to investing time, energy and money into networking in the first place. 99.9% of the time, turning a networking opportunity into closed business requires a follow-up meeting, phone call or email. If you don’t follow up you are absolutely leaving money on the table and missing out on valuable opportunities. Learn my proven 7-step system for effective follow-up so you can take full advantage of the connections you make when networking!
6. Present yourself as knowledgeable, but be sure to project warmth and sincerity. The right attitude, the right posture, and an engaging smile will go a long way to attracting ideal clients, before you even open your mouth! Your demeanor must be one that is approachable. You may know a lot – but no one likes a ‘know-it-all.’
7. Put your knowledge to work for you by offering to assist others. You will be appreciated for generously sharing what you know and what you do, giving others just one more reason to recommend you to those who are in need of the service your business provides.

The lifeblood of a profitable business is strong, healthy, and mutually beneficial relationships. Successful entrepreneurs know that it takes more than just a handshake and a couple of drinks to build a business. Profitable relationships, formed between like-minded visionaries, are built on trust, and developed over time. So remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint.

Whether it is online or in person, networking is vital to attracting ideal clients and keeping your cash flow consistent. The more successful you are at networking, the more successful you will be in your business.

Which of the strategies shared can you implement in your business next week? Share your thoughts and your plan here on my blog!

Your Action Plan For This Week:

1. Practice networking. Find a local event to attend that specifically targets your ideal client, determine how it can benefit you and prepare to attend with the purpose of creating the opportunities you are looking for.
2. Schedule time on your calendar to follow-up on all recent connections and make appointments with prospects to continue the conversation you started.
3. Start looking for opportunities to connect others in your network! Pay close attention to the needs of friends, family members, colleagues and clients.  Refer them to professionals in your network who can assist them in overcoming their challenges. This highlights your generous spirit and gives you another reason to contact individuals without asking for anything in return.

Start looking for opportunities to connect others in your network! Pay close attention to the needs of friends, family members, colleagues and clients. Refer them to professionals in your network who can assist them in overcoming their challenges. This highlights your generous spirit and gives you another reason to contact individuals without asking for anything in return.

Sydni Craig-Hart, The Smart Simple Marketing Mentor, is founder of SmartSimpleMarketing.com. Known for her easy, strategic and results-focused approach to marketing, she also has the unique ability to find untapped profit centers in her client’s businesses so they can create money NOW.

Visit www.SmartSimpleMarketing.com for your FREE kit, “5 Simple Steps to More Clients, More Visibility and More Freedom” and schedule your FREE “Profit Breakthrough” session with Sydni!


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