Internet marketing. It seems so easy. Build a website, purchase some banner advertisements and perhaps dip into some social media efforts. Before you know it, you believe you are marketing your venture on the World Wide Web. In a sense you are, but are you effectively marketing your business online?
Internet marketing involves a lot of different aspects of the internet including designing, developing, advertising, and sales. A recent survey, “State of Small Business Online Advertising Q4 2009,” conducted by WebVisible Inc. showed that small businesses increased their search marketing expenditures by 111% over the same period a year earlier among other relevant findings. The time is now to get aggressive with your internet marketing efforts and having background information will help you make better decisions.
On Thursday, April 8 at 3:00 p.m. EST, I will be hosting a webinar on internet marketing titled: “Internet Marketing: Easy Solutions to Grow Your Business.” This webinar will take a look at the growing popularity of internet marketing and provide tips on how your small business can carve out their niche in online advertising.
Within this webinar, we’ll be covering a variety of topics including:
- Showcasing the importance and benefits of internet marketing for your small business.
- Highlighting different and effective forms of internet marketing including websites, email, and search engine optimization (SEO).
- The importance of tracking and analyzing your online efforts can help improve your response rates and grow your bottom line.
- How your small business can get started with internet marketing.
At the end of the webinar, attendees are encouraged to interact and ask their questions regarding to internet marketing. I will try to answer as many questions as I can in the allotted time.
To be part of the webinar, please visit www.vistaprint.com/events to sign up.
There’s been a lot of talk lately about the business card dying as a networking medium. New electronic ways of exchanging information and mobile phone applications that make the transferring of contact info as simple as “bumping” your devices together are all the rage. There was even some anecdotal evidence of the business card dying at the recently held SXSW show. According to this piece in Fortune, less people were handing out business cards than last year.
But there are plenty of people who still believe that business cards are one of the most effective ways to network and get you and your business seen and remembered. They include one of our own contributors, Bob Prentice, who talks about planting your business cards in fertile ground, and using them to network and be memorable.
What is changing is what the business card includes and what is has become. Last week Valerie Maltoni wrote a very effective post on her Conversation Agent blog about how to optimize your business card, including real life tips and tricks for what to include and how to set yourself apart.
What your opinion, are business cards still relevant for your business, and how have yours adapted over the years?
This guest post is part of our ongoing Small Business Experts series, and is written by Bob Prentice, founder of www.mrattitudespeaks.com
The “school of hard knocks” gives no diploma-only scars! We all have gotten off track at one time or another in life. I know that personally I have messed up plenty of times, receiving much of my education through hard knocks, and I’ve certainly got the scars to prove it. Can any of you relate? Whacked many times on the side of the head so to speak. Ouch! Read more…
This guest post is part of our ongoing Small Business Experts series, and is written by Cathlyn Driscoll, co-founder of Best Business Mastery in New Jersey.
NJBIZ magazine in New Jersey noted an uptick in small business’ hiring trend from mid 2009 till now, March 2010.
Intuit on Monday launched the new index, which is culled from data on the 50,000 small employers using Intuit Online Payroll. The index rose 0.2 percent in February, continuing an upward trend that began in the summer of 2009, the company said.
What I made note of was the following:
“Small companies that employ fewer than 20 workers, these micro enterprises account for nearly 90 percent of the nation’s employers, said Cameron Schmidt, vice president of Intuit’s Employee Management Solutions division.”
This information really brings the full power of small businesses to light. I know that small business owners can some times get caught up in their own ‘small town mentality’ at times. I’ve heard many a wonderful small business owner say something to the effect of “Well, my revenue is only ‘X’ .” or “Well, I understand that my business isn’t as important as ‘X’s’ business because I don’t give them as many big purchase orders.” Read more…
The following post is part of our “Small Business Experts” series, and is brought to you by Mindy Sanderson, Vistaprint’s Small Business Marketing Specialist.
Small business owners are constantly struggling to figure out what their customers and potential customers, are interested in. While some simply guess at what their potential clientele would like to see, most successful entrepreneurs are going to the source (customers) to find out. Some have the time and capacity to discuss improvements and other company matters with its customers one-on-one, others form small focus groups. For the most part though, small business owners are taking advantage of surveys to gain valuable information about their business and what can be improved. Read more…
Getting your PPC (paid per click) ad to appear at the top of the Google results page doesn’t just depend on how much money you bid.
Google wants even PAID advertisements to be relevant to its users, so it uses a “Quality Score” to determine where an ad will show up in the sponsored listings. A higher Quality Score means a better position. It can even earn your ad a better spot than one that’s paying more per click! Read more…
This guest post is part of our ongoing Small Business Perspectives series, and is written by Karen Hodges, Principal at Synthesis Coaching in Rhode Island.
Ed Koch, the former Mayor of New York City, is my patron saint of asking.
Why? His famous phrase was “how’m I doing?” which he used everywhere — at fundraising functions, newscasts, and even when meeting fellow New Yorkers on the streets of the city.
At first glance his phrase can appear to be kitschy, but in truth there was a lot of boldness along with a heart-felt invitation to interact and give him feedback.
Just think for a moment what impact Mayor Koch’s “how’m I doing” could have on your business?
Some amazing benefits of asking might be:
- You could get the pulse of what’s top-of-mind from your market right now
- You could identify a weakness in an area of your company that you weren’t aware of, such as customer service, or billing.
- You could find out what your clients really like about working with you and what sets you apart from the competition.
- You could get true jewels of information to use when soliciting new business
- You could get information on a product or service that your market is wanting but that your company is not yet providing
And probably most importantly:
- Your customers or clients would feel that you cared enough to ask and truly listen.
So for the moment forget about dreaming up and sending out fancy surveys, forms, comment cards, focus groups, or any other high fallutin’ method of gathering information.
Just ask “how’m I doing?” and listen. I’d love to hear about what you learned.
To your Adventures to Transformation™!