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Category Archives: Service Marketing

Christmas in Australia is poised for an online shopping explosion.

By | Online Marketing, Service Marketing, Small Business Marketing, Thoughtleadership and Content Marketing | No Comments

Last year saw record shopping online in Australia and no doubt it will be a similar trend this year. IBS report states,”Revenue generated by Australian online retailers is expected to increase 8.3% per annum over the five years through 2012-13 and total $11.3 billion.”

FastDesign has some good highlights from an article: Trends in online Shopping

  • Online shopping in Australia is expected to expand its share of the retail market from 2 to 3 percent to 7 to 8 percent – closer to the threshold it already occupies in the U.S. and the U.K
  • Huge growth in the online House and Garden sector (where consumers browse online and buy in store  – we love to research!)
  • Growth in the electronics sector – with car audio, games, LCD TVs, DVDs, XBox 360s and CDs all commonly searched
  • Continued growth in traffic to shopping and classifieds websites

How are you going as a business get remain visible over the festive season?

Watch this webinar by Experian knowledge Centre

 Key Highlights:

1. Start your Christmas promotion before November because consumers buy in November for Christmas.

2. Sunday is the biggest shopping day online.

3. Boxing Day is still a hit for retailers and are looking online for the sales before this date.

4. We are involved in research online before we buy

5. Email should not be underestimated when compared with search and social

6. Growth, better SEO, key terms and consumers online activity.

7. Engage often and early.

8. Guarantee delivery dates.

9. People are activity on social forums around Christmas.

10. Use Sale, Christmas and New Year terms in SEO

11. Mobile use in store up by 10%. Do you have a mobile site.

12. Free shipping works

13. Offers – 2nd offer or complimentary offers online

14. Shopping cart – 67% abandonment. Use follow up email to re-capture

15. Wishing lists work as a follow up email idea.

Ideas for B2B

1. Make a connection with clients. Sometimes the physical card / postcard is still nice as long as you personalise it. Otherwise don’t bother. E-cards , smilebox and Jibjab can be a funny way to inject some personality into your brand. Sometimes highlighting or supporting a cause might be the way to go.

2. Use it as a way to promote your IP, 12 top blog articles, Free webinar, e-book etc

3.Celebrate with clients in a Christmas function. There is nothing like pressing the flesh with people to reconnect and ignite a new interest in the next years planning.

4. Package some NY planning services and make them order able online. A gift of a service is also a good idea. $200 worth of small business planning. Gift cards work equally well for B2B.

5. A gift as long as it is useful for both. A calendar with your logo, a mouse mat, coffee mug. Something visible.

Summary

In a white paper called Retail in Australia: It’s Time to Embrace the Digital Future.’ there is a nice summary of where we are.
“Whether Australian retailers are ready or not, the local retail landscape has irrevocably changed. From ‘bricks and mortar’ to ‘bricks and clicks’ to purely ‘e-tail’, consumers are demanding more from traditional retailers and there are significant risks for those who do not to keep up with the pace of change.“Consumers are looking for more than a web presence, they want convenience and value online, through features like free shipping and free returns, making it challenging for those retailers who have yet to embrace e-commerce to catch up. Bricks and mortar retailers need to take action now if they want to become competitive in the online space, offering a way for consumers to connect both online and offline,”  said Matt Glasner, General Manager of Experian Marketing Services.

Some Xmas campaigns

I thought were funny and worth sharing. Merry Christmas

Target – crazy lady, thought it was funny
E-bay  – another take on a Christmas carol
Aussiebum
– just cos
Interactive marketing – Promotions that are high-tech

Are you talking all about you, AGAIN?

By | Branding, Service Marketing, Small Business Marketing | No Comments

When I look at your website can I tell that you get me? I mean if you really understand my needs, or is it all about you? I am not interested in all about you. The problem with the majority of websites and I dare say most marketing materials, is  that they shows a distinct lack of understanding and insight about two things:
1. The ideal customers that they are trying to attract
2. A way of positioning the value that they offer to that customer group so it is effective.

Maybe this lack of insight  that is resulting in this swell in demand around research, buyer personas, geotargeting, consumer panels, crowd sourcing, social media mapping, branded communities and more.

Larger corporates are leveraging any means possible to provide insight into product development, positioning, sales touch points and refining their brand footprint. As a small business we can take a more immediate and simple approach but it is useful to stay abreast of the technologies used to discover real-time insights.
Some examples of companies in this space are:
Panelportal.com makes it easy for companies to deep dive into what customers think about their brands in real-time using a cutting-edge, socially inspired branded member community website. In real-time you can get feedback from the community on any idea.

Usamp -With 9 million panelists. Usamp combines self-service, mobile ap on demand audience, branded panel.

Gfk.com is a retail research company that has been around for ages but has adapted its research to take in more social media and mobile tools.

So what is the take away for us. Well as a small business ask your customers for their opinions. It might be as simple as having a suggestion tab on your website or doing a yearly survey using wufoo or survey monkey. The direct approach sometimes works well. Is there anything I could be doing to serve you better. Ask for recommendations in LinkedIn and read what they have to say. Do a poll on Facebook. Great a persona of your ideal customers and check it against who you are attracting.

Look at your marketing materials from your customer’s point of you. Are they written to them or more about you? It is not just about your customers but also your employees. Do you ask them for feedback about how they feel about working with you? They often have some good insights for better ways to serve your customers.

Tools

Content Mapping. This Barbara Gago Persona Mapping pdf is a great tool for mapping out your content strategy using the buying cycle and a persona profile template to profile your ideal customer.

Identify your ideal customers: who are those people you serve best and love to work with. Focus on these. This template helps you narrow your focus and allows you to be more purposeful with your marketing strategy.

If you don’t control your personal brand, Google will!

By | Branding, Service Marketing, Small Business Marketing | No Comments

Changes in how people communicate, research and connect have created the need to own your digital footprint or personal brand. To do this effectively you need to follow a few steps. I have researched personal branding and come up with my checklist. Hope you find it useful.

“Your personal brand is comprised of your character, competence and charisma. It’s who you are, what you do and why you’re special. You have to create it, claim it and then make sure everyone in your network knows about it!”

“The fundamental unit of the new economy is not the corporation but the individual” Tom Peters

Process- BRAND YOU!

Below is a process will you need to address to create your personal brand. Google yourself? Do you come up? Control what is being said about you, how you are represented and seen. If you are not online you are invisible.

1.Planning Stage Why: Your goals for branding yourself? 

“ Vision is a love affair with an idea.” Clarke and Crossland.

  • Visibility, Preference, Credibility, Engagement, Influence, Perception

Who? Who is your audience and who do you want to influence? Choose a Niche or target Audience (make branding easy) “

“It is easy to decide what you are going to do. The hard thing is to decide what you are not going to do.” Michael Dell

  • Key stakeholders
  • Influencers
  • Niche

2.Extract and Get and External View Point

What is your current brand identity? Identifying brand You. Me Inc.

This involves looking at yourself and your attributes in a brutally honest way. It takes guts to unflinchingly take stock of the details of your life, personality and achievements.

Like Improve upon

 

External Feedback – current reputation

  • 360 reach – online tool
  • What words would you use to describe me?
  • Listen to how you are introduced.
  • What am I good at?

“All the worlds a stage. I love the Brand You idea, the brand you life. It is my life. My love. My art. My craft. My performance.” Tom Peters

40 yrs 11000 days to go! Life is short, play more…

 

 

Your personal ethics: What you stand for? 3 Brand rules: clarity, consistency, constancy. One core message.

“Create a cause not a business.” Gary Hamel

What do you want it to be? Own your brand.

  • Work out what traits you want to scrap and what you want to profile.
  • What is the pitch? Take a position. What do you want to be known for?

3. Express Stage – Getting your message out there How to we reach your right target market of people you want to influence? Choose the right tools!

“We are CEOs of our own companies: ME Inc. To be in business today, our most important job to be head marketer for the brand called you.” Tom Peters

Using collateral: your look feel style – evaluate your touchpoints

  • Positioning Brand Statement – attach and idea to yourself
  • Elevator pitch – express your essence in a sentence
  • Profile
  • Portfolio
  • Biography
  • Press Kit
  • Cover letter
  • Social Media profiles; Linkedin Profile
  • Recommendations
  • Success stories
  • Your brand identity system – Name in font, tagline, colour, thank you notes
  • PR
  • Domains
  • Website
  • Email accounts and signature
  • Phone message
  • Texting
  • Pictures
  • Events
  • Office environment
  • Personal style; (reflect your brand) grooming, clothing, posture, communication style
  • Forums – On and Off Line
  • Networking Associations

End game is a media/communication plan for me.

4. Ongoing Measurement

  • Google
  • Google Alerts
  • Network expansion
  • Projects
  • Recommendations
  • PR
  • Vizibility

If you are not branding yourself, you can be assured that others are doing it for you!

Resources:

Reach – Online branding

Selfbrand Catherine Kaputa

Colin Wright – How to be remarkable

Jump start your personal brand

Tom Peters the brand you 50 – Amazon

Dan Schawbel – Personal Branding Blog

Personal Branding Slideshare – Kristian Andersen

Your brand surey – Brand You

Online ID calculator

Personal Branding Summit in itunes

Online Johari Window – your key attributes

Visibility.com

Personal Branding

about.me/yourname.

 

“Personal branding is all about soft power. It’s about knowing how you add remarkable, distinctive, measurable value,and being able to communicate and market yourself and your ideas. The reason most people don’t succeed is not because they lack business or technical skills. It’s because they lack soft power skills: the ability to communicate well, to influence and persuade, to build a powerful network of business associates, and to plan a career strategy the maximizes your strengths and the realities of the marketplace.” Katherine Kaputa

 

Contact: Danielle MacInnis to do a Personal Branding workshop today. Download this article here.

Do you have the right sales tools?

By | Sales Process, Service Marketing, Small Business Marketing | No Comments

Sales materials  and tools are designed to help you move prospects forward in the sales process. Each piece should have a specific job: to answer a natural question that the prospect has at a specific point in the process.

Literature and tools are powerful because they can:

  • Carry authority and credibility if very well done
  • Convey your message consistently
  • Convey your brand positioning and value proposition in a memorable and powerful way
  • Increase your efficiency because they are passed along to multiple people within an organization rather than delivered verbally by a salesperson on a one-to-one basis

Tools and literature help convey product information and answer your prospects’ questions. You can use tools and literature to generate new leads. For example, white papers and case studies are very popular tools to offer in email and internet marketing campaigns. Prospects can download them to gain valuable information, and you can capture names and email addresses for further follow up.

What kind of sales literature and tools do you need? Put yourself in the prospect’s shoes and think about the questions and objections you’d have at each stage of the sales process.

 

Here are some examples

 

Sales Tool/Literature Piece  Typical Use 
Company brochureA printed piece – it can be as simple as a one page tri-fold to an elaborate four-color bound piece, or a PDF for delivery via email. When you introduce yourself and your company. People don’t typically read it, but they will probably skim it and expect it. It can be a valuable tool in conveying your brand positioning through visual design and production quality.
WebsiteYour website is an incredibly important sales tool. Some consumers and most businesspeople review a prospective vendor’s website, and many of them make a decision whether to do business with that company based on the website alone.Since a website is typically the most complex sales tool, use 12 – Websites to evaluate your current site if you have one, and then develop requirements based on your needs. Prospects typically look at websites early in the sales process. You can also use your site to generate new prospects through internet marketing efforts.
Product/service data sheetsOne-page sheets with product specifications and photos. To convey detailed or technical product information in a simple format.
White papersA research report that provides news, “best practices,” scenarios, and/or data in an informative, neutral (non-salesy) tone. To educate the market about a problem and potential solution. It isn’t meant to sell the features or benefits of a product or service — it’s meant to quantify a pain and entice the prospect to continue to seek a solution.A valuable white paper is a popular offer for email and internet marketing campaigns — it can be used to generate new leads and nurture existing leads.
Case studiesShow how a client’s problem was solved by your product/service. After a product presentation, shows in detail how a customer benefited from your product/service.
Reference listsA list of current customers, often segmented by industry or division. People typically like to review references either before they start the sales process, or right before they purchase.
Hard copy newsletterProvides valuable information while keeping you top-of-mind. Typically 11×18 folded to create four usable pages. To gain more information about their product, service or industry.

 

 

Sales Tool/Literature Piece  Typical Use 
PowerPoint presentation templatePowerPoint is an electronic slideshow software by Microsoft. It’s used to provide visuals during a presentation. Viewing during a presentation and potentially a handout, but rarely as a piece of standalone literature.
Product demoPhysically showing how the product works To show how the product/service works.
Product sampleGiving the product to the prospect to review/use. For people to feel, test and use the product.
FoldersHold literature and business cards – can be printed to convey ideas, themes or messages. To hold other information, such as a brochure, data sheets and case studies.

 

 

Templates  Typical Use 
Proposal templateStructured delivery of your quote of your product/service delivery and price – provides an opportunity to make another impression when prospect is making the decision to purchase. To review your price for the products/services offered.
Sales letter templatesTemplates of different letters for your salespeople to use during the sales process. To ensure that salespeople are conveying your messaging and to speed up the letter-writing process.
Email templatesSame as sales letters – templates your sales team can use in the sales process. Same as sales letters.

 

 

Interactive Tools Typical Use
Email newsletterDelivered via email, this newsletter will provide answers to questions and links to sites that should help prospects. To gain information and ask questions.

 

Once you’ve generated a list of potential tools & literature, figure out exactly what each piece should accomplish. Then determine the:

  • Literature & tools you need
  • Singular objective of the piece (each piece of literature or each tool should be designed to meet a very specific objective)
  • Step in the sales process where it should be delivered

Here is my list of sales tools

Sales Tools

  • Brochures
  • Corporate overview
  • Press Kit
  • Testimonials
  • Case Studies
  • Style Guide and visual library
  • Business cards
  • Proposal Letter
  • Quote template
  • Packaging of proposal – Folder
  • Competitive report
  • Gartner report
  • Industry stats
  • Project sheets
  • Contract
  • Product information
  • Company Blog
  • Video presentation
  • Slide presentation
  • Ipad presentation
  • Pricing information
  • CRM – data management
  • and forecasting
  • Customer Feedback Survey
  • Partner list
  • Marketing Calendar
  • Value proposition
  • Segmentation and focus on VIPs
  • Thank you letter
  • Thank you Cards
  • Merchandise
  • Gifts
  • Target customer profilingProspecting Lists
  • Social Media
  • Personal Profile – good picture
  • Voicemail message
  • Recommendations (LinkedIn)
  • Car signage
  • Uniform
  • Business card
  • Entertainment allowance
  • Sales training
  • Scripts
  • Overcoming objections
  • Building Trust/ Relationships
  • Touchpoint calendar
  • Online portals
  • Screen sharing
  • Quota and commission structure
Do you have any more to add? Here are 100 content examples to download from the content institute.
If you need help creating great sales tools visit our sales tools page.

Are you lost about how to market your business online?

By | Business marketing, Facebook Marketing, Marketing Strategy, Marketing Technology, Mobile Marketing, Online Marketing, SEO, Service Marketing, Small Business Marketing | No Comments

Is marketing online in the too hard basket? Well these days if you aren’t online your business may as well be invisible.

At MacInnis Marketing we have become Digital marketing gurus. We didn’t start that way but over the past 5 years we have honed our skills because of the dramatic change in customer interactions online. With this revolution has come a whole new way to market and thus Digital marketing services are now a big part of a small business marketing kit-bag.

There is only one problem. Most small businesses still don’t have the time to understand it and so can be paying for a service without really understanding its value. It is understandable as the terminology let alone the technology is confusing.

We help educate you to be able to make informed decisions and ensure that you receive a report and measurement of everything we do online. We match your marketing goals with the technology and ensure your budget serves you best.

 

Ready to learn more Click here.

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