Marketing Strategy

TOP 5 BENEFITS OF WORKING WITH A MARKETING COMPANY THAT SERVES MULTIPLE INDUSTRIES

TOP 5 BENEFITS OF WORKING WITH A MARKETING COMPANY THAT SERVES MULTIPLE INDUSTRIES 900 600 Kari Switala

Recently, we lost the opportunity to work with a new customer. When we asked why they chose a different marketing agency, they said it was because that company focused solely on their industry, so they’d potentially know how to help them better than we could.

We understood their reasoning and agree that identifying a niche market you want to serve is a smart strategy, but we also think it can depend on the industry. In many cases it is highly beneficial to work with a marketing agency that has a diversified client base. Here are the top 5 benefits your business will reap by working with a marketing company that serves multiple industries:

1. New Trends

There are always new trends popping up (like TikTok, for example). Working with multiple industries gives us the opportunity to catch new trends as they emerge and see how they might apply to each industry we serve. Every industry markets very differently, so this gives us the opportunity to be on the forefront of developing new ways to use each trend. For instance, if we see a trend happening in the tech space that hasn’t hit the manufacturing industry yet, we can use it to help our manufacturing clients be thought leaders in their industry.

Because marketing is fast-paced and the way we market changes rapidly, we keep a pulse on what’s happening across multiple industries. This allows us to keep our client’s marketing fresh and relevant. We’re constantly looking for new ideas to incorporate into our client’s marketing plans to help them stand out and differentiate their products and services from their competitors.

Example: We recently started running a LinkedIn Lead Generation campaign for one of our commercial roofing clients after we saw how effective it was for a manufacturing client who was targeting a similar audience. As a result, our commercial roofing client is now generating more warm leads than ever before and he and his sales team are thrilled with the results they’re seeing and how easy it is!

2. Outside Perspective

Working with clients in a variety of industries allows us to truly have an outside perspective on you and your business, since we’re not in your industry day in and day out. We are often able to see something that could be used to help sell or market your business that maybe you (or marketing agencies who only work in that specific industry) don’t see because we’re looking at your business with fresh eyes.

Example: One of our education clients shared with us that they started their business because their own daughter had struggles with learning, and they needed a program to help her. When they found one that worked for them, they had such a great experience that they decided to buy into the franchise so they could help others like their daughter. When we heard this, our first response was that they needed to share that story in their initial parent consultations. They did, and saw a 10% increase in their conversion rate! Because we weren’t laser-focused on their industry, we were able to see things from the perspective of potential customers and understand what we would want to hear if we were considering working with their company.

3. Agility

Because we market for multiple industries and utilize different tools for each one, it takes us very little time to pivot and apply a new strategy or utilize a new tool for a different industry.

Example: We have two clients with very different businesses who are marketing to the same audience. We were able to apply lessons we learned from one client’s Facebook ad campaigns and apply it to our other client’s campaign, which enabled them to get the results they wanted faster and more easily. We’ve also been able to help both of them get more warm leads from the lead generation campaigns we’ve run and we’ve greatly improved their open and click-through rates on their email campaigns.

4. Breadth of Knowledge

At any given time our team can be doing content research for 10-15 different industries. Not only does that greatly expand our knowledge base, it also enables us to find interesting topics and research that applies to multiple industries.

Example: While doing content research for one of our manufacturing clients, we came across a great source of information and signed up for their weekly newsletter. The information we’ve gathered from this resource has not only helped us create cutting edge content for our manufacturing client, it has also benefited our clients in the commercial cleaning and commercial construction industry.

 5. Custom Content

We create custom content for your business that is developed to achieve results. While we gather trends, tools, lessons learned and more from our varied client base, we don’t recycle content. The content we create is never copied and pasted from one client to the next: Every piece we develop for you is designed to meet your specific needs and goals, whether it’s getting more website views, attracting warm leads, increasing your social media following, or another goal that is important to you. This ensures that your marketing is always new, vibrant, and engaging – never stale. Our goal is to help you stand out from the competition.

Your Business is Unique, and Your Marketing Should Be Too

Every business has a different story to tell. A cookie-cutter approach to marketing won’t help you stand out – you need a customized targeted marketing plan. The key to our marketing success is truly understanding who each client’s customers are and what differentiates our clients from their competitors. Once we know this, we can create a targeted marketing strategy guaranteed to help our clients get the results they are looking for.

If you’re looking to stand out from the crowd, Wild Fig Marketing can make that happen. Wild Fig Marketing is your digital marketing agency! Whether you’re looking for marketing help in the form of website design, sales or process automation, content marketing, email marketing or lead generation, we have the knowledge and experience to help you rock your brand. Contact us on our website or set up a complimentary 30-minute strategy session here!

STRATEGIES TO HELP CUSTOMERS FIND YOU ONLINE

STRATEGIES TO HELP CUSTOMERS FIND YOU ONLINE 900 600 Maddi Koenig

Did you know that 67% of a customer’s journey happens online? More and more, consumers are doing online research before making any kind of decision to purchase products or hire services. If you’re not showing up prominently in online search results and social media, it’s unlikely that potential customers will find you. To really attract an audience, you need to make it as easy as possible for customers to find you online. Let’s go over a few strategies to help you do that.

Stake Your Claim on Your Name

Claim your name on every social media platform you might ever want to use, even if you don’t plan to use them all now – if you wait, they may not be available later. Create a custom URL for each social network whenever possible (most platforms allow this). This makes it easier for others to find you on social media and allows you to point people to a customized name that is easy to remember. Use the same name for your website domain and social media networks if possible (or choose a second name to use when the first isn’t available). Ideally, this name should include your business name.

Title case your website domain and social media URLs on all of your marketing (capitalize the first letter of each word). That way they will be easy to read and remember – you want them to be recognizable with a quick look.

For example:

facebook.com/WildFigMarketing 

is much easier to read than

facebook.com/wildfigmarketing 

Do you see what we mean? This is especially helpful if your URL is lengthy.

Note: how people enter the URL into their browser won’t matter – whether they use capitals or lower case they’ll still get to your website or social media page. Title casing just makes it easy for people to see your name at a glance.

Consistently Post New, Relevant Content 

Your website and social media accounts don’t have to be flashy but they do need to cater to your target market. Think about what your customers need from you:

  • Why have they come to your site?
  • What do they want to know?
  • Is the most important information easy to find?
  • Is your main message highly visible?

Relevant content will grab your customers’ attention and keep them coming back for more.

Another important element in your online presence is consistency. You want to post on your blog and social media networks as often as you can to keep the momentum going, but you also need to think about how often you’ll be able to consistently post. If you start posting daily, your readers will come to expect that and will see you as less reliable if you suddenly drop down to once a week. If all you have time for is a weekly post, then do that – just be consistent.

Boost Your SEO With Keywords

Believe it or not, the text content on your website is even more important than visual elements. It conveys your message of course, but it’s also how Google finds and ranks your site. Make sure all of the text throughout your website is keyword-rich. (Check out our blog on keyword strategy here). Keywords – the words people would use to search for your product or service online – are how you get noticed by Google search.

Keyword-rich content will boost your SEO (search engine optimization) and help you appear prominently in online search results. The goal is to rank on the first page of Google search, as people rarely look beyond the first page. Since it is difficult to rank on the first page for every possible thing your customers would search for, focus on a few words or phrases that reflect what’s most important to you and use those keywords throughout your website copy. You can also use keywords in page titles, meta tags, image descriptions, and page descriptions to help boost your SEO.

Stay Active on Social Media

Stay in front of your audience by being consistently active on social networks. To start with, figure out which networks your target market uses most. The most common are Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, but the ones you focus on will depend on your target audience’s demographics. Regardless of which network or networks you choose, our advice is the same – stay active and use these networks to interact with your audience.

That doesn’t mean you have to post your own new content every day. Do post some relevant content of your own, but also share content you find and want to pass on to your followers, post polls and questions to gather opinions and increase engagement, respond to comments people post on your page, and comment on others’ pages and posts.

Also, keep your finger on the pulse of what others in your industry are doing online by joining groups, following other accounts whose content you find useful, following people who follow you, and subscribing to blogs in your industry. These things will all help you become an online resource in your area of expertise and get you seen by your customers.

Sprinkle Your Website and Social Media Addresses Like Confetti 

In other words, put them everywhere! Add icons or clickable links to your email signature, website, eNewsletters, ebooks, and other online documents. Add this information to all of your social media networks too, so people can connect with you on multiple sites if they want to. If you’re short on space or the platform only allows for one or two sites, include only your top ones. Don’t forget to make sure all of the links work, and if possible set them to open in another tab.

On your website, make your social media icons easy to find. Generally speaking, the top or bottom of the page (or both) is the best spot for them. Make sure the icons are big enough or spaced far enough apart to be able to easily click or tap on them.

You should also include your website and social media URLs on all printed materials, including business cards, brochures, ads, product packaging, letterhead, invoices, and more. Make sure your customers can find your accounts easily.

All of these tips will help you stand out online so your target audience can easily find and engage with you. Need help with your online marketing strategy? We can help. Wild Fig Marketing is your digital marketing agency! Whether you’re looking for marketing help in the form of website design, sales or process automation, content marketing, email marketing or lead generation, we have the knowledge and experience to help you rock your brand. Contact us on our website or set up a complimentary 30-minute strategy session here!

ADJUSTING YOUR B2B MARKETING STRATEGY DURING AN ECONOMIC DOWNTURN

ADJUSTING YOUR B2B MARKETING STRATEGY DURING AN ECONOMIC DOWNTURN 900 600 Kari Switala

In the best of times, a comprehensive marketing strategy is vital to the success of your business. In an economic downturn it becomes even more crucial. You need a marketing strategy that focuses on the needs and wants of your target market, and those needs and wants change during a downturn. To stay on the right track, you will need to adjust your B2B marketing strategy accordingly.

Whatever You Do, Don’t Stop Marketing

keep marketingWhen the economy slows down, it can be tempting to stop spending on marketing to save money. Don’t do that. Slashing your marketing budget will only help in the short term – in the long run it will weaken your brand and leave you less profitable. Your marketing dollars, if spent wisely, are never wasted. Plus, there are plenty of marketing options available that won’t break the bank. Keeping your business top of mind with current clients and potential customers is crucial right now – that way, when the market recovers (and it will), they’ll think of you when they’re ready to buy.

Analyze Past Performance

It’s important to measure audience engagement with your online content, whether it’s blogs, ads, social media posts, or other content. That way, you can invest in what’s working and adjust or cut what isn’t. Review data from Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Facebook analytics, and other platforms you’re using to determine what types of content are doing the best job of engaging your target audience. For the ones that aren’t up to snuff, either make improvements to them or cut them for now.

Focus on the Basics: Email, SEO, and Content

As you’re sorting through your marketing strategy, there are three items that should stay on it regardless of what else you cut – Email Marketing, SEO, and Content Marketing.

  • Email Marketing is one of the most effective (and cost-effective) forms of marketing you can do. It is an easy way to build loyalty and trust with your customers, it costs very little, and it enables you to deliver relevant content directly into your customers’ inboxes. See our recent blog post for our best tips on writing emails people will actually open.
  • SEO Marketing is a long-term marketing strategy – you need to keep plugging away at it if you want results. In your SEO marketing, always make sure you focus on using strategically placed keywords, building content with a clear goal in mind, and distributing that content to relevant sites to reach your customers.
  • Content Marketing enables you to educate and influence your target audience and close sales – even in an economic downturn. When done well, content marketing will give you a great return on your investment. To get the most out of this type of marketing, you need to be consistent and focus on creating content that builds trust with your target market. Check out our recent post to learn why blogging is a must-have for your marketing strategy.

Understand Your Target Market

Once you’ve determined what types of marketing you will stick with, take some time to make sure you’re addressing the current needs and wants of your target audience. In an economic downturn, people (and businesses) generally fall into one of four categories:

  • Slam on the Brakes – This group is the hardest hit by an economic downturn. They will immediately stop unnecessary spending and hold on for dear life.
  • Pained But Patient – This group is a little more optimistic about the long-term, but still nervous about the short-term. They will slow down their spending, but not to the same extent.
  • Comfortably Well Off – This group feels secure about their ability to survive. They will be a bit more selective about their spending, but will continue to spend at nearly the same rate as before.
  • Live for Today – This group functions pretty much as usual and is generally unconcerned about the future. They are likely to continue spending normally as long as their income allows it.

To best address your target audience’s needs and wants during this time, you’ll need to find out where they fall and adjust your marketing strategy accordingly. The best way to find this out? Ask. Interview your most loyal clients to learn what their motives and plans for spending are in the near future. Find out what they need right now and think about how you can help meet that need.

Gather Reviews & Testimonials

Now is a great time to ask current clients for reviews or testimonials. Reviews strengthen your online reputation and help build trust with potential customers. Think about it – how often do you make purchasing decisions these days without first checking online reviews? For most of us, customer reviews are a big part of the research we do prior to purchase.

Reach out to past and current clients to ask for reviews on Google, Facebook, or Yelp, or for a testimonial you can use in your marketing. Use these reviews and testimonials on your website, social media, ads, and other online content to help boost consumer confidence in your business.

Challenge = Opportunity

Stay positive. While marketing during an economic downturn can be challenging in many ways, it can also offer opportunities you wouldn’t otherwise have. With some tweaks, your marketing strategy can become more focused, relevant, and adaptable than ever, resulting in better engagement with your audience and making you more likely to survive future downturns or other crises.

Wild Fig Marketing can help you build a solid marketing strategy to keep you on track no matter what the economy is doing. Whether you’re looking for marketing help in the form of website design, sales or process automation, content marketing, email marketing or lead generation, we have the knowledge and experience to help you rock your brand. Contact us on our website or set up a complimentary 30-minute strategy session here!

Rise Up Free Guide

BLOGS: A MARKETING STRATEGY MUST-HAVE

BLOGS: A MARKETING STRATEGY MUST-HAVE 900 600 Mindy Traylor

Blogging is an investment in your business. And blogs don’t have to be overwhelming! In a recent study by Orbit Media Studios, it takes an average of 3 hours and 57 minutes to write a blog post. Theme Grill reports that blog posts between 300-600 words strike the balance between being highly shareable and ranking well for SEO. Let’s take a closer look at a few main ways that blogging stands to benefit your business.

Blogging helps increase your SEO

Why take the time to create content if your prospects can’t find it? SEO is a hot-button topic these days and understanding how it works is critical to marketing success. When you publish blog posts, unlike social media posts, they populate in search engines. When you leverage an effective keyword strategy in your blog post content, your posts populate more frequently and achieve higher SEO rankings. This, in turn, drives more traffic to your posts and ultimately, to your website. HubSpot reports that blogs help companies generate 67% more leads every month!

Blogging adds value to your brand while positioning you as an expert in your field

When you write a post for your business, put yourself in your client’s shoes. Answer a question they have. Solve one of their common problems. Address common sales objections. Address skeptics by highlighting customer success stories. Your goal is to provide your readers with relevant information that speaks to their unique struggles while at the same time piquing their curiosity so they stick around to learn more. Hit that content sweet spot by clearly defining your target market and developing your content around that market.

And be consistent! One piece of content isn’t typically enough to convert a reader. According to HubSpot, “47% of buyers consume three to five pieces of content before making a purchase.” When you consistently generate quality blog posts that speak directly to your readers, you build your credibility and position yourself as an industry expert. Then, when your reader is ready to make a purchase, your brand is top of mind.

Blogging creates more opportunities to engage with your prospects

As a business owner, you’re always looking for fresh ways to get in front of your audience and engage with them. Blogging checks both of these boxes. Your effective SEO keyword strategy gets you in front of your audience while your valuable content keeps you there. At the end of your posts, invite your readers to engage with you on your topic by using the comments field. Ask them to share their experiences or throw out any questions they have. (Pro tip: Reader questions make great subject matter for future posts!) And always respond. This builds a bridge between you and your audience and creates that personal connection visitors will remember down the road when they’re in the market for your product or service.

A few parting tips

  • A quality blog post includes 1-2 keywords, headings, an engaging introduction, images or video, at least two pertinent internal links, at least two high-quality external links and a clear call-to-action.
  • When you publish your blog post on your website, don’t stop there. Create a post summary and a link to your post and put it up on your social channels to attract a wider audience and send more traffic to your website. If your business has a newsletter, include a summary and a link in there as well. Then ask your audience to share your post with people in their sphere who may be interested in your content.
  • The goal is to distribute your post as widely as possible among an on-point audience (which positions you as an expert in your field and keeps you top of mind with prospects so you’re their go-to in their time of need!) And always ALWAYS invite people to subscribe to your blog so they never miss out on your valuable content!

Do you want to improve your blogging strategy but need a little help? We’ve got you covered. Wild Fig Marketing is your digital marketing agency! Whether you’re looking for marketing help in the form of website design, sales or process automation, content marketing, email marketing or lead generation, we have the knowledge and experience to help you rock your brand. Contact us on our website or set up a complimentary 30-minute strategy session here!

Customer Driven Growth

7 TIPS FOR CUSTOMER DRIVEN GROWTH

7 TIPS FOR CUSTOMER DRIVEN GROWTH 900 600 Jen Hiltunen

Customers want a voice in your brand and in the way they engage with you. Forbes recently identified customer-driven growth as “the elusive holy grail.” If you can align your business operations to achieve this kind of growth, you’re setting your business up for long-term success. Let’s start by taking a look at some current trends in this arena. 

Increasing efficiency

Particularly in the B2C retail segment, businesses are prioritizing the booming customer-driven demand for efficiency. Although it costs more to offer free 2-day shipping and free returns, for example, retailers recognize that customers expect this efficiency. More and more businesses are willing to increase efficiency despite higher costs. Currently, 49% of B2C and 39% of B2B businesses report maintaining this focus.  

Investing in technology

Technology fuels businesses’ ability to increase their efficiency. For this reason, both B2B and B2C companies are also maintaining a focus on developing and implementing new technology to drive greater efficiency. 

Additionally, businesses are automating their business and marketing processes and tapping into apps that streamline their customer communications. Calendly, for example, eliminates the email and phone tag game and makes it simple for prospects to book appointments. Today’s consumers also expect up-to-date websites and will often hit the red “x” on websites with boring or outdated content. Keep all customer-facing tech updated and fuel your efficiency with updated tech on the backend as well! 

Hiring talent

Successful business leaders are recognizing the importance of hiring talent to implement their new technology and keep their customer-facing platforms up to date. 

After years of hearing employers gripe about managing employees, we strategically hired six amazing employees at Wild Fig Marketing. While the HR details can be challenging, we are thrilled with our talented team and recognize the value that employees with a wide range of expertise can provide for our business and for our customers’ businesses. 

Aiming to meet or anticipate customer expectations

Many companies align their strategies to meet customer expectations. After all, in today’s B2B and B2C markets, customers are savvy and particular and they will remain loyal to you only as long as you’re delivering on their expectations. An increasing number of businesses are working to go a step further and anticipate customer demands with innovative products and services. 

At Wild Fig Marketing, we know a thing or two about leaning into customer-driven growth. Here are some of our tried-and-true tips!

Provide stellar customer service

  • Do this on the front-end by refining your onboarding process to get customers excited about your product or service immediately. 
  • Make sure you communicate the value of your product or service and let them know what you want them to do next. 
  • Ask customers about their pain-points and what answers they’re seeking from your product or service. 
  • Solicit feedback from your customers and check in periodically to make sure they’re satisfied with their purchase. 
  • Address any questions or concerns that arise. 

Build relationships with your customers 

Show your customers that you champion their success and let them know you’re with them on each step of their journey. Give them opportunities to engage with your brand on social media and host customer-appreciation events. 

Don’t neglect to let your customers know that you’re thankful for them! At Wild Fig, we make a point of hosting regular customer-appreciation events. A couple months ago, we hosted an evening of drinks and hors d’oeuvres at Bald Man Brewing in Eagan, MN. It was a memorable evening filled with laughter and wonderful conversations!

Speak to customers with your content

Provide valuable content for your customers. This can be in the form of blog posts, manuals or guides, whitepapers, video, webinars, etc. When you supply value, you drive customer engagement and loyalty which, ultimately, creates brand advocates and grows your business. 

Kari, our founder and Chief Creative Officer, recently started hosting live Facebook events on Thursdays on a variety of topics as yet another way to supply our customers with valuable content and also give them an opportunity to engage with us across these topics. The response has been phenomenal and she plans to continue!

Customer-driven growth shouldn’t be a goal. It should be a mindset. At Wild Fig Marketing, we specialize in customer-oriented business strategy. If you want help assessing customer demands and driving business growth, sign up for our complimentary 30-minute strategy call here!

Wild Fig Marketing is your digital marketing agency! Whether you’re looking for marketing help in the form of website design, sales or process automation, content marketing, email marketing or lead generation, we have the knowledge and experience to help you rock your brand. 

 

 

MY BIGGEST MARKETING SUCCESS STORY

MY BIGGEST MARKETING SUCCESS STORY 900 600 WildFigAdmin

If you met our sweet Lucy, our 4-month-old hound/shepherd/lab mix, I’m convinced that you would be just as smitten as I am – her big droopy ears, her big tan paws and these soft brown eyes that stare directly into your soul. And if you can conjure up in your mind the colors and swirls of a marble cake mix – that’s her beautiful coat. She’s playful…she’s snuggly…she’s potty trained…Ok, maybe not exactly potty trained but, well, we’ve got time to work on that.

Lucy is a great addition to our family and has integrated well with Steve and Murphy, our other two pups. Our boys, Kevin and I love our Lucy and that love is most definitely mutual. What more could we ask for?

But we haven’t always wanted another puppy. Or more accurately, Kevin hasn’t always wanted another puppy. What you see before you today is the result of a long, persistent and ultimately successful marketing campaign. The psychology of conversion is truly fascinating.

Step 1: Identify Your Main Goal/Objective

The key to a successful marketing campaign begins with stating a clearly defined goal or objective. In this case, my goal was to get another puppy because a) I LOVE dogs and b) I wanted to find a playmate for our very busy 2-year-old dog, Murphy.

Step 2: Understand Who Your Target Audience Is

This is often one of the most challenging components of a marketing campaign and yet also one of the most critical. Many businesses try to skip this part because they believe their product or service can benefit everyone. Regardless of what you sell, however, this is never the case. If you take the time to narrow down your focus, your campaign will be more effective and you’ll get results quicker.

In this case, my target audience was pretty cut and dry. It was Kevin, a 47-year-old Polish male (insert your favorite Polish joke here) who thoroughly analyzes every decision he makes. He is equal parts stubborn and convincing and relies heavily on Excel spreadsheets when it comes to making big decisions.

Knowing the demographics of your target audience is imperative. Go the extra mile and spend time thinking about how they make decisions, where they find their information and how your products/services can impact their life. You’re guaranteed better results.

During this part of the process, it’s helpful to create buyer personas.

  • Interview at least 3-5 people who fit the following criteria: current customers, prospective customers, people who aren’t familiar with your company.
  • Ask them a list of predetermined questions regarding their job description, the company they work for, their goals, their challenges, how they gather information, their personal background and how they select and interact with vendors.
  • Use your research to create your buyer personas. Check out this great HubSpot article for more details on how to create buyer personas for your company!

Looking for another great resource? This article will help you put wheels on the process!

Creating buyer personas allows you to engage in a targeted marketing campaign.

Step 3: Determine The Best Tools/Marketing Channels To Use

Once you’ve clearly defined your target audience, the next step is figuring out how to reach them. Where do they get information? Do they read the newspaper or other publications? Do they prefer Facebook to LinkedIn? Go where they go!

There is an abundance of marketing channels at your disposal. Instead of spreading yourself thin by trying to reach prospects through too many channels simultaneously, choose a few of the ones you think will be the most effective for your buyer personas and drill down. Here’s some great info to get you started!

When it comes to social media channels, it’s helpful to take a look at demographics for each of the biggest contenders and see which ones best align with your persona demographics. Then direct your efforts towards those channels.

Since my campaign wasn’t a traditional marketing campaign, the channels I chose were a bit non-traditional. I chose a multi-pronged approach (which is what we recommend to our clients when we’re developing their campaigns). My campaign consisted of text messages, peer pressure/influencer marketing (thank you WFM team for your support!) and event marketing. The event? I organized a Canine Coffee Break with Spot’s Last Stop. They were going to bring puppies into our Wild Fig office to help socialize them. And of course the pups are up for adoption too. I know. I fight pretty dirty.

I figured that, as soon as my husband saw the puppies and how happy they made me, he’d be hard-pressed to say no. My team was also rooting for me and I knew they’d help seal the deal. Marketing is no stranger to obstacles, however, and COVID-19 put a kink in my plan and we had to postpone the event. Hint: Take some time in the planning stages to look for potential obstacles. It will help you avoid them more often than not. (Note to self: I should probably take my own advice next time.)

Now what?

I knew I had to adjust my plan.

The Governor was about to issue a shelter-in-place order and I had to act fast. I changed my messaging accordingly:

Hey honey, I’ve been thinking. This really is the perfect time to get a puppy since all four of us will be home to help potty train him or her…

I went on to state my case and all the benefits of adopting a puppy.

I also sweetened the pot by offering to oversee all of the training (gulp) and I utilized influencers (our teenage boys). How could Kevin say “no” now? I knew my marketing strategy was taking hold.

Step 4: Develop Your Messaging

Once you have a plan for which channels you’re going to use to reach your target audience, it’s time to create your “before and after” personas. What does life look like for your ideal customer before they purchase your product? Perhaps they’re overwhelmed, sad, wishing they had more leisure time…Now, what does life look like for your ideal customer after they make that purchase? Are they more relaxed and content? Less sad or frustrated? Taking time to flesh out these personas will help you more precisely align your message.

Then, as you develop your message, keep these things in mind:

Be consistent

Did you know that it takes 8 touches just to get an initial conversation with your prospect? And it takes many more touches to convert. That’s why it’s critical to keep your message in front of your prospects at all times.

Timing is everything

Knowing when to ask for the sale is paramount. If you ask too early you could lose the deal for good.

I definitely had to be mindful of this when timing my communication. If my husband had a bad day or was in a funk, I refrained from talk about puppy adoption.

Step 5: Analyze Your Results

When all is said and done, how did your campaign go? Did you accomplish your goals? More specifically, what parts of your campaign were the most effective? The least effective? Then ask yourself about your customers: What did you learn about them? Did you target them in an on-point way or were your tactics a little off? Were you making any assumptions about your customers that turned out not to be true?

I’m happy to report that Operation Puppy was a tremendous success.

It wasn’t without its obstacles and it certainly required planning, precision and patience. However, the end goal was achieved – I sold my idea to Kevin – and our family is now reaping the benefits. Isn’t she just the cutest?

IS IT TIME FOR AN ONLINE MARKETING MAKEOVER?

IS IT TIME FOR AN ONLINE MARKETING MAKEOVER? 900 600 Kari Switala

If your online marketing is looking a bit out of date, it may be time for a makeover! Giving your marketing a fresh look doesn’t always mean a complete overhaul – there are a few small things you can do that will make a big difference in your online appearance.

REFRESH YOUR TIRED LOGO

If your logo has been around a while, or if it no longer effectively represents your brand, it’s time for a refresh. Again, there’s no need to go overboard here – you don’t necessarily need a whole new logo. A few small changes can do the trick. For instance, you could add a symbol to your current logo or change the color scheme. Our logo has changed 3 times over the years! As you can see, we didn’t make major changes – just tweaked the color scheme each time. The color of your logo should reflect your brand’s persona (more on that in a bit). If your logo’s colors no longer do that, or if your brand’s personality or values have changed, a color refresh could be just what you need.

When making changes, keep current and upcoming design trends in mind to make sure your logo is relevant to today’s market. Simple/minimalist designs, geometric shapes, unusual fonts and gradients or neon colors are a few current trends to take note of. Ultimately, you want a logo that simply and effectively conveys your brand’s ideology and resonates with consumers.

SAY GOODBYE TO STOCK PHOTOS AND HELLO TO CUSTOM PHOTOGRAPHY

If your website is full of generic stock photos, adding some custom photography can make it much more engaging. Stock photos might look fine on your site, but they don’t show potential customers who you are as a company. We recently hired Dan at The Anthologie to do a photoshoot with our entire team and a bucket of props! Not only was it a lot of fun, but we ended up with great photos that represent who we are in a simple but effective way. Photos of your team also show potential clients who they will be working with. This helps consumers get to know you a bit before they even meet with you!

Updating your photos on a regular basis also shows potential clients that you’re keeping up with trends and are on top of things. This goes a long way to building consumer confidence. Also, make sure your photos are optimized for both desktop and mobile (a good photographer can help with that). And don’t forget your social media photos! Regularly changing photos on social media helps to keep engagement up. People are inundated with images every day – to stay relevant, you need to update your photos often.

 

SHAKE UP YOUR EMAILS WITH NEW HEADERS

Keep your emails fresh and relevant by using updated headers that reflect seasonal elements or highlight upcoming special events. It’s an easy change that doesn’t take a ton of time and helps make your emails more eye-catching. Your email header should grab people’s attention and make them want to continue reading. In order to do that, you need to change it up often. Your clients’ inboxes are likely filled with countless new emails on a daily basis, so make sure your email headers stand out in the crowd. We love using www.canva.com to create ours – check it out!

CREATE AN ONLINE LOOK THAT REFLECTS YOUR PERSONA

Ours is all about fun, passion & creativity…wait till you see our new website (coming soon)! What is your brand’s persona? If you’re not sure, imagine your brand as an actual human being. How would you describe them? What would their name be? How about their favorite color? Favorite food? How would they dress? Thinking of your brand in this way helps put into words who you are as a company, what your values are, and what you want to communicate to your clients and potential customers.

People love a good story. Use your online presence to tell the story of who you are. What are you passionate about as a business? How did your company get its start? Why do you do what you do? Everything on your site should help tell this story, from the words you use to your photos and color scheme. Consumers love this kind of personalization – it helps them feel connected to you, which in turn builds trust.

SPRING FOR A PROFESSIONAL HEADSHOT

Headshots can get dated quickly, as hair and clothing styles change often. If it’s been awhile since you last had your headshot taken, it’s time for a new one. Your headshot allows people to get to know you a bit before they meet you. As we’ve mentioned already, that puts people at ease and builds trust. This is crucial both for potential clients and potential employers! Therefore, it’s important to have an updated headshot on your website and all social media accounts – especially LinkedIn.

When you have your photos taken, make sure what you wear reflects your personality and your current or prospective career. Keep it simple with solid colors (avoid solid white or fluorescent colors, and choose darks or neutrals for outerwear). Bringing a tie or scarf and a couple of layers will give you options to choose from. And though you may feel silly doing it, practice your smile! Really – get in front of a mirror and practice to see what your smile looks like. You’re going for a relaxed, at ease smile.

These are just a few ideas to keep your online look fresh and relevant. Need help with any of these things, or more great ideas? We’d love to help you look fantastic online – contact us today to see what we can do for you!

TARGETED MARKETING…IS IT REALLY THAT IMPORTANT?

TARGETED MARKETING…IS IT REALLY THAT IMPORTANT? 900 600 Kari Switala

Targeted Marketing: Why It’s Important For Your Business To Consider Implementing

More and more businesses are using targeted marketing to reach new customers and engage more effectively with their long-term clients. If you’ve reached a plateau with your current marketing strategies, targeted marketing could be the jolt your business needs to start growing again.

 

What Is Targeted Marketing?

Targeted marketing uses artificial intelligence to predict what audience will be most likely to engage with your business, allowing you to focus your content on those demographics. It uses a wide variety of data to do this, including (but not limited to) things like location, age, type of device used, and what companies or products the consumer has engaged with online in the past. It’s a way to streamline your marketing, making it much more effective (and therefore saving you money!).

You may have noticed that as you browse the internet, the ads you see reflect websites you have visited, products you have searched for, and websites and products that are similar. This is a prime example of targeted marketing. Another example would be when you log into a site you have ordered items from before and the site not only offers you the option to re-order those products with the click of a button, but also suggests similar items to buy. The website has kept track of what you ordered in the past and used that data to personalize the content you see. If you have experienced this before, you know how effective this type of marketing can be.

Targeted marketing can be used with your CRM as well, allowing you to create relevant content like blog posts, emails and newsletters for your clients based on the information you have stored about them and how they have interacted with you in the past. This type of personalized interaction shows your clients that they, the individual, are important to you – they’re not just another consumer. In the digital world we live in, offering personalized content like this can be crucial to both increasing your customer base and retaining current clients.

How Can Targeted Marketing Positively Affect Your Business?

Every piece of content you put out there is an opportunity to create a positive impression in the minds of your readers. Content that is thoughtful and informative makes readers want to engage with you and know more about what your brand offers. It turns prospects into customers, and one-time customers into long-term clients. Which is exactly what we’re all looking for, right?

You may be thinking, “Sure, that sounds great, but does it really work?” Let’s take a look at some numbers.

  • More than 80% of consumers have purchased a product or service as a result of interacting with a company’s online content marketing, according to a 2018 Clutch survey.
  • The same survey noted that 53% of consumers are more likely to become repeat visitors to a company’s website after engaging with their online content. In other words, targeted marketing can significantly increase repeat traffic to your website (and boost your SEO ratings as well).
  • A ContentWriters study in 2019 showed that 61% of business marketers surveyed were publishing content several times per week, and 89% of those marketers reported getting higher quality leads from that content marketing vs other types of marketing.
  • 71% of consumers are willing to spend more to support companies they trust, and 82% say trust is the tiebreaker when deciding between similar products or services. (Reader’s Digest Most Trusted Brand Survey 2018). Targeted marketing is an opportunity to give consumers quality, relevant content every time they interact with you. This consistency builds trust, and establishing trust is a crucial first step to gaining repeat customers.
  • In fact, 96% of the most successful business-to-business content marketers say their targeted audience views them as a trusted and reliable source of information (B2B Content Marketing 2019 by Content Marketing Institute).

Targeted Marketing Is The Key To Your Success

You can see why in 2019, 82% of CMOs were planning to increase their digital content budgets by 50% (Nielsen 2018 CMO Report)! Companies are finding that targeted content marketing, including blogs, social media, video, and SEO, are indispensable to the success of their business.

If you’ve been on the fence about adding targeted content to your marketing strategy, now is the time to take the leap. Contact us to get started with targeted marketing today. Your business will reap the benefits of personalized content for years to come.