Author: parwitayasa

Increase Your Wealth With Stock Market Investment

Increase Your Wealth With Stock Market Investment

Investing in the stock market is one of the fastest ways to maximize your returns. However, this form of investment also comes with a high level of risk. While it is common for investors to grow rich overnight with stock market investments, it is equally common to lose a lot of money in the stock market.

So then how can one leverage this investment choice without taking on too many risks? Here are a few guidelines that can help you to make the right stock market investments at the right time.

Background Research

For investors, doing background research on which companies to invest in is the key to building profits. It has been observed that first-time investors usually invest in big companies as it is considered a safer option. You can also look deeper and focus on the companies of tomorrow but you should know how to identify them. This is where background research comes in handy. You need to understand industry trends to make the most of your stock investments.

Company Health

To enjoy best returns it is advisable to invest in good companies. You can determine a company’s quality by its financial health and track record with customers and investors alike. For you to keep earning returns the company should continue to perform well in the future too.

It’s All About Timing

For success in the stock market, it is very important to invest at the right time. Making timely decisions to buy and sell stocks is the key to earning big returns.

Let Your Portfolio Evolve

Over a period of time, as companies change their strategies, you should also allow your portfolio to evolve. It is better to spread investments over a diversified portfolio to reduce risks. This is a common strategy investors use for long-term success. Never put all your eggs in one basket is indeed the golden rule for stock market investment.

Reinvest To Multiply Your Profits

One good strategy is to re-invest the profits earned from previous investments. This concept is called ‘Compounding’. As you re-invest the base of your investment grows and thus returns are higher. If you are a proactive investor and you are reinvesting profits earned then there are good chances your returns will be very good in the long-term.

Avail The Services Of An Investment Manager

If you don’t have enough know-how on stocks and trends then you can choose to hire the services of a good investment manager. If you have a good risk appetite, then you can give your investment manager some flexibility. Remember while losses are part of the investing process, a good investment advisor should be able to come up with a strategy to keep this at a minimum while maximizing your gains.

Today there is so much information available online and you can also use an online trading platform to buy and sell stocks thus making stock investments easier than ever before. Sign up with a reliable online provider and give it a shot!



Source by Firoz Patel

A Story for the Australian Automotive Industry

A Story for the Australian Automotive Industry

Introduction to the Topic

Australia is one of only a few countries with the capabilities to design cars from scratch and manufacture in significant volumes. Car sales in Australia are also an important factor of the Australian Automotive Industry and the Australian Economy in total.

The Australian Auto Industry (A.A.I. in short) can be divided into two interrelated sectors, the Production ( Manufacturing) sector and the Car Sales (or Import-Sales) sector, both equally important for the total performance of the A.A.I. On one hand, the Manufacturing sector refers to the market conditions under which Australian Manufacturing businesses compete, by producing vehicles and related products, with the main aim of maximizing profits. On the other hand, the Sales sector refers to the market conditions under which car representative sale businesses compete, by the sale of cars and related products, having the same aim with businesses within sector one.

It is very important to state the distinction between these two sectors within the A.A.I., as we will be talking about two different market structures, business strategies, competition conditions, e.t.c. In order to analyse these market structures it would be appropriate to develop two economic models, one for each A.A.I. sector.

1.1-Analyzing the Manufacturing Sector

There is only one market structure that can best describe the market conditions in the Manufacturing sector if A.A.I., this is Oligopoly. As there are only two organizations that produce cars in Australia, and these are Ford and Holden, the competition methods and pricing strategies are based between these two organizations. The following economic model shall help define the competition and economic conditions for the Australian Automotive Manufacturing market.

The first important characteristic of Oligopoly that needs to be stated is that prices between competitors tend to be “sticky”, which means that they change less frequently than any other market structure. This statement will be explained in more detail later on, when we will be developing the Game-Theory model, as it is a very important concept of competition. The second most important characteristic is that when prices do change, firms are likely to change their pricing policies together. These two characteristics can boost up competition within the market. Firms will either try to match rivals’ price changes or ignore them. This is depended on the Game-Theory that is explained bellow.

However, the recent market conditions for the Australian Automotive Industry and the actions of the Australian Government have worsen the competition conditions and possible pricing options available for firms in the market. The production and maintenance costs for a manufacturing business in Australia are already high and rising, mostly due to lack of economic resources and advance of technology. That is, as Holden and Ford try to compete each other, given that prices tend to be “sticky”, they are forced to focus on technological advantage and marketing. Both of these business sectors produce high costs. Furthermore, the Australian government has made it clear that is unwilling to further subsidize automotive organizations in the market. All these factors stated above produce a negative effect on the competitiveness of both firms. In other words, rising costs alongside with decreased revenue push firms in experiencing lower and decreasing levels of profitability.

Profitability and the level of competitiveness are highly interrelated in an oligopolistic market structure, being the two most important factors, alongside with product differentiation, in the competition policies that the firms follow. When we say that the level of competitiveness of a firm is very low, we mean that the firm cannot react effectively to any price changes or competition changes or even changes in production costs. This may leave the firm depended on its’ competitor’s pricing and competition actions, not being able to affect the market competitiveness at all. The firm is then exposed to external danger and can be pushed out of the market, or even worse to shut production and declare bankrupt.

1.2- The Game-Theory Model for Oligopoly

The Game Theory model is used to explain the pricing and competition policies of firms in an oligopolistic market structure. Furthermore, it can show the few different competition policies based on pricing that the two firms can follow, that is High and Low as stated above. All firms in this market structure follow a Game-Theory model, although it is surely more detailed than our example, in the process of trying to forecast competitors’ pricing and competition movements and also keep track of the competition levels in the market and market share. But how does this happen?

For example, let’s say that there are four different fields, each divided in half. These fields represent the pricing strategies that Holden and Ford may use in the process of competing each other. Field A and C represent a High-Pricing policy for Holden, while fields A and B represent a High-Pricing policy for …

Insurance Sales – Do You Have a Strategic Sales Action Plan?

Insurance Sales – Do You Have a Strategic Sales Action Plan?

Do you want to shake up your sales results? It’s time to rethink you’re approach and come up with a plan that will produce results. A strategic sales action plan provides an implementable quantifiable path to significantly improve your results.

Let’s begin by identifying the key elements of a strategic sales action plan. The key elements of your strategic sales action plan include: the value you provide, your unique market position, your marketing plan, your sales plan, and your follow-up plan. Each element is critical, but you want to develop or review them in a specific order.

Start by identifying how creating the value that you will provide that people are willing to pay money for. This very simple concept is often overlooked, but people will buy from you if doing so is more valuable than buying from someone else like a competitor. And please realize that this value must be provided by you not the company whose products or services you may be selling.

You as an individual sales person need to establish your position in the market. Otherwise you’re just like everyone else and there isn’t any advantage to buying from you. There are numerous ways to position yourself, but you may want to start by considering: your areas of expertise, who you work with, what you do for the people you work with, speed, quality, etc.

You need a marketing plan to market yourself to the people you want to sell to. A marketing plan isn’t just a list of random marketing activities you plan to do hoping to get results. A marketing plan is the overall plan you devise to generate a specific number of qualified leads that you can consistently and predictably repeat. And every action on your marketing plan must be track-able and measurable so you can make adaptations and improvements.

You’re most familiar with a sales plan. Your sales plan should specifically tell you how you will proactively move the qualified leads entering your sales funnel into buyers. And you should be tracking each phase making adaptations and improvements.

Do you have a follow-up plan for building and extending the relationship you’ve started generating more business and referrals? That’s the whole point of a follow-up plan. Once you start a relationship with a buyer you want to at least maintain the relationship so they will buy from you again. And your follow-up plan should include sales coaching to help your loyal buyers to refer you.

Shake up your sales results by developing a strategic sales action plan to get the results you want. Of course, a plan in and of itself won’t produce the desired results. You produce the desired results by taking the actions you now know are the most effective actions and expecting your desired outcomes to follow.



Source by Cheryl Clausen

The 3C’s and 4P’s of Outdoor Marketing

The 3C’s and 4P’s of Outdoor Marketing

When I was working on my MBA, I took a very insightful class called Marketing Strategy that drilled the concept of the 3C’s and 4P’s into my brain. If you have not heard of this marketing concept, briefly reviewed, it is understanding your Customer and understanding the strengths and weaknesses of your Competition and your Company, then taking this knowledge and adjusting your Price, Product, Place of distribution and type of Promotion to maximize your sales and profitability.

When I started my own company, I sought to take this concept a step further and applying its principles to Outdoor Marketing.

Customer

Applying this principle to outdoor marketing requires different thought than developing a TV or radio spot then deciding on which stations to play it. For instance, you must understand where does your customers travel, shop, work, eat and enjoy life outside of the home? Moreover, what are their likes and dislikes? You must truly get to know your customers because this information will be crucial in your outdoor marketing efforts and specifically in determining exactly where to place your ads.

Competition

You are not the only one who wants your potential customers. Undoubtedly, you have competition. To effectively communicate to those customers, you will need to differentiate your company from your competition and focus on your strengths and on their weaknesses. Furthermore, be sure to expand your idea of competition. You not only have direct competitors (i.e. Ford dealership vs. Toyota dealership), but you also have indirect competitors (i.e. Ford dealership vs. Mass Transit). Broaden your horizon and give adequate thought as to their strengths and weaknesses.

Think like a consumer. If you understand your customers, you will know where to advertise to reach them and your competition may not. Don’t be afraid to directly compare your strengths to their weaknesses in your outdoor advertising. Make your competitors defend themselves. The business arena is not the place to play nice guy.

Company

First and foremost list what your company can do well and, more importantly, what it cannot. It is quite painful to admit that you do not excel in all areas of your business but it is better to understand it now and not misstep and let your customers down by promoting something that you can’t delivery on.

Once you have this list, can you effectively communicate what your company does utilizing outdoor media? Can you get across your primary focus and your main strengths? Can you make it simple enough? Focus on your top two strengths that intersect with the top wants of your target customers and place your ads where they frequent. Furthermore, depending on what you want to communicate, you will need to choose the appropriate outdoor media of which there are many.

Price

If your company cannot afford to advertise on traditional billboards, which can average $2,000 per month for a major highway billboard, then you should look into other forms of outdoor and out-of-home media. You can advertise at bus stops, in malls, on diner placemats, and of course my favorite, on receptacles. The price for this media can range anywhere from $50 to $500 per month depending on which you choose and where they are located.

If you are a smaller company with a small budget for advertising, alternative out-of-home media, as opposed to the traditional highway billboard, will be most effective for you. You will not be able to take the shotgun approach and advertise everywhere. You will have to be more like a sniper and target your customers (not literally, of course) using the information you’ve gathered when analyzing your customers.

Place

Where you advertise will be dictated by how you analyzed your target customer. Thus it is vitally important to truly understand your customer otherwise you could develop a fantastic message that falls on deaf ears. If your target customers are college students, you should place your message around bookstores, coffee shops, bars, and late night eateries. If your target customers are professionals, then you should place your ads on mass transit, highways into town, bus stops, and lunch-time eateries. If your target customers are stay-at-home moms, you should place your ads in malls, shopping centers, and grocery stores. Take note of your best customers and you’ll know exactly where to place your ads.

Product

Your product will most likely have many features. Depending on where you are advertising and which segments of your customer base will see your message, you will want to showcase different features of your product or service. If your message is in an upscale part of town, you will want to focus on your service and how you are customer-oriented. If you are placing your message in a lower-scale section of town, then you’ll want to focus on value and your guarantee.

Promotion

In …

The Psychology of Consumerism

The Psychology of Consumerism

On the marketing and behavioral aspects of consumerism and the advantages and disadvantages of consumerism

Consumerism is in a way the more human aspect of business and companies and businesses consider consumers along with their employees as the essential ‘people elements’ of their endeavor. Yet consumerism can have its other meanings and represent a culture of buying, highlight the virtues and vices of a materialistic society and emphasize on the importance of globalized business environment. Companies have to keep their consumers happy and develop and sell new products based on consumer needs. The needs of the consumers and the needs of businesses however seem to be circular as companies create needs of consumers and consumers also project their needs to businesses suggesting an interdependent relationship. When I say, companies create consumer needs, we can consider the example of Apple iPhone. Apple successfully created a need in consumers to possess a product that would successfully integrate the phone and the iPod. Of course Apple must have also done the initial survey to find out what consumer needs or demands are and then finally expanded and focused on these consumer needs to come up with the new products, including the iPhone. A good company is the one that can provide realistic and well defined frameworks for initial vague consumer needs. The needs of the consumers are initially not well defined or clear as consumers tend to have some idea about what they want but are not too sure about what they actually want. So through surveys and discussions with consumers and in house technical or product development advisers, companies are able to develop on these initial consumer ideas and vague consumer needs and provide shape to their future product plans.

Yet we could first try to define consumerism and understand why consumerism is such an important aspect of business and marketing. The term consumerism seems to have both positive and negative connotations as consumerism could mean a culture of possessions and glorification of materialism. Consumerism could however also mean progressively more consumption of goods and products that could benefit the economy and the markets with a heightened buying culture among people although consumerism could also mean the entire gamut of marketing and business activities that finally lead to the buying of products by consumers.

Consumerism thus has a broad definition and can include a range of buying and business behaviors, so finally consumerism is a ‘kind of behavior’ and that is how it is important to psychology and psychologists. Consumerism is about individuals or groups and how they select or buy secure and use or dispose products and services so that they can satisfy their needs of consumption and the practice of consumerism would also have a significant effect on society. The study of consumer behavior in a systematic and even a scientific manner would be the basis of the psychology of consumers and consumerism. The psychology of consumerism could be considered from two different aspects – one from a marketing or the business viewpoint in which consumerism is seen as essential since it helps maintain companies and businesses so the psychology would be based on how to attract consumers whereas the other viewpoint is the behavioral aspect of consumerism or why consumers buy or consume products and services, and what are the reasons of a buying culture and how this could be justified with normal or abnormal behavioral analysis.

The latter part of this discussion can help us answer several issues about consumerism.

Consumer Psychology from a Marketing Aspect –

Consumers buy according to their personal needs and what they feel is necessary and also according to social needs as they follow trends and thus become interested in certain products and services. Certain products appear more important, essential or attractive to consumers and these products tend to have certain value which makes it easier for companies to sell these products. Businesses and companies are capable of attracting more consumers by using the psychological principles of marketing and consumer behaviour and the key is to create want or the requirement for a product. Businesses and companies understand initial consumer needs through surveys and then they develop new products to attract consumers. Once products are developed, brand image and advertisements help in providing an association between products and companies and when consumers develop an element of familiarity with this association between brand name and product features, they tend to even want the product. In keeping with the demands of competition and consumerism, companies tend to give promotional offers, discounts, sales and low priced products with the aim of attracting more consumers. Considering the marketing perspective, consumerism is advantageous as more consumers and increased buying behavior would mean more sales of products although the disadvantages of increased consumer spending would be minimal except that …

Benefits of Marketing Online

Benefits of Marketing Online

Marketing requirements are the exact no matter how big or minimal your business is:

1) Brand your product.

2) Identify who your target viewers is.

3) Get the product sales.

4) Set up repeat customers. Online marketing is very powerful in organizing all four of these rules.

Online Marketing Defined:

The idea of online marketing is: Adding your business or product on the Internet for millions of users to discover so that you can change your website into a strong tool to maximize your sales and business opportunity.

But web marketing is much more than adding your advertising online. Marketing online contains such areas as communicating with your potential customers, promoting your business or product online, and ensuring that your web page content is important and up to date. The great thing about web marketing is that you don’t want to have an enormous budget to put together a marketing campaign that is effective. There are approaches that you can use to make your marketing methods easy and lucrative such website templates, shopping cart templates, and digital marketing templates.

What You Need for Online Marketing to be Successful:

There are several important points to consider just before you get into the approaches and intricacies of website marketing:

1) Communication: A vital part of online marketing is how you interact to your customer’s e-mail. You don’t want to lose potential customers after you’ve made the efforts to have them visit your web page and then contact you for more information. E-mail is a very good and cost efficient way for you to make more sales. The key to this effectiveness is “consistency”. You need to be regular in your response to your prospects. You’ll also want to ensure that the tone of your e-mail matches with the tone you’ve set in your site content.

2) Human Resources: If you’re going to do well online you need to have plenty of people working with you. Efficient websites incorporate a personal touch with a fast response time to clients. Your purpose is to turn the visitors to your website into customers. The regular time for a return e-mail is from 48 to 72 hours. If you hold out any longer to e-mail back you risk losing the purchaser. This means that if you don’t possess the man power to return e-mail in two to three days you require to take a further look at your marketing technique.

3) Products buyers want to buy online: Just before you start marketing online you need to be sure that you have a product or service that customers want to buy. Buyers need to find a value in what you’re selling. There are two stimulating factors when it involves selling online: cost and benefits. Ask your self if customers will find it less complicated to buy online than finding a local store. Is it inexpensive for them to buy this from you online?



Source by Ramon Tarruella

Selling Your Candles – Operating a Successful Market Stall

Selling Your Candles – Operating a Successful Market Stall

The Market Scene

One of the best places to attract customers to your business is markets. Markets are found in all suburbs and regional areas of Australia, so there should be no problem in finding one that suits you.

Remember, markets are hard work. There are no shortcuts to running a successful market stall. There are early starts and long days, but done correctly you can be very successful.

Having been both a stall holder and a Market Manager of 3 markets I have seen both the good and bad of stalls. How your display looks at the market can make the difference between going home with much less stock and money in your pocket or going home miserable.

Here are some tips on running a successful market stall. The most important thing to realize is that you have plenty of competition and they are not only other candle makers. Anyone who is vying for a customers’ money, is your competition. So what can you do?

Here are some ideas on how to get their attention.

1/ Have your signage professionally done. Hand written signs don’t look professional. If you want to save money, print them yourself on your home printer and laminate them.

2/ It’s not hard to make your stand attractive with so many candles. You have the colors, the jars, the fragrances. Everything you need to make it appealing. If you are able to make a good first impression, then customers will always remember you. Remember most customers choose the candle they want by the fragrance.

3/ Make sure you have the right attitude. No one wants to approach a person who is hiding behind their newspaper or looks absolutely miserable. Customers go to a market because they see it as a day out, to enjoy themselves.

4/ Keep your stall tidy. Keep all boxes and packaging out of site.

5/ Try not to eat or drink at your stall. I know everyone gets hungry, but have the courtesy to at least stop eating. Stall holders are generally very obliging people, so most would be happy to look after your stall for a few minutes to give you a break. Remember, that it is your stall not theirs so have the courtesy of not being be too long. If they get a customer at their own stall whose do your think will take preference?

6/ Be aware of your customers. Don’t ignore them. If you are already in discussions with one customer, then acknowledge other customers by telling them you will be with them in a minute. Ignoring them is a great way to lose customers.

The person who may buy is the person listening rather than the one you were directly talking to.

7/ If you have a uniform or T-shirt that has your logo, wear it. It shows that you are proud of your business and you are instantly identifiable and it’s a great way to promote your business.

8/ Some customers are reluctant to approach you if you seem too aggressive. It’s a good idea to try your approach on family and friends first to see what they think.

9/ If they are reluctant to talk, offer them your brochure or business card. Let them know how to contact you and how to place an order. Allow them time to browse through your information and let them know that you are available to answer any questions they have.

10/ It seems silly to have to say this, but be friendly and make them feel welcome. Wearing a name tag makes a big difference. It makes a customers feel more at ease if they know who they are dealing with. Once a customer either makes a purchase or seems interested enough ask them if they would like to be added to your data base. Make sure that there is some benefit to this, such as special offers and discounts.

11/ Make sure that you can answer any questions.

12/ Follow through if you get inquiries. If customers give you their email address, make the most of it. Keep in touch with your customers. Send them a postcard!

13/ Presentation is so important to a successful money making business. Whether you are doing a market, a candle making demonstration, a class or a corporate presentation, wedding fair, or an exhibition, you should invest in the correct presentation materials.

Markets can be a great start to any business, so take the time to do your research and make the most of your opportunities.



Source by Frosa Katsis

Branding Strategies – When a Bargain-Brand Attacks a Premium-Brand

Branding Strategies – When a Bargain-Brand Attacks a Premium-Brand

When I was ten years old at a summer camp I was leading in the potato sack race. To check on my competitors I looked over my shoulder and suddenly tripped and fell. I came in last place. Even the slowest person, Marsh Mellow Matt beat me. It was humiliating. But in the end I gained a good learning experience.

When a bargain-brand product attacks your premium-brand space, is it still healthy to look over your shoulder? Will you trip over too?

In a robust economy it’s relatively easy to maintain profitable growth of a premium-brand product. Conversely, in today’s economy, the competitive forces are testing the best of us. We are entering a new paradigm of business and the days of conspicuous consumption are quickly receding. Since 2007 over 8 million jobs have been lost. We have chronic unemployment at 10%, or in reality its 17% when you add the people who gave up looking for a job. As fear, insecurity, and the need to be frugal enter the consciousness of consumers, companies are responding by introducing lower price bargain-brand products. What’s a premium-brand to do?

There are three strategies a premium-brand can consider; (1) Introduce your own bargain-brand, (2) Innovate a new value product category (3) Or, maintain status quo. Let’s consider the ramifications of deploying your own Bargain-Brand.

As Jacqueline Kennedy once said, “I don’t react, I respond.”

There’s a saying, “Never fight a pig because you’ll get muddy and the pig will enjoy it.” The same goes for a premium-brand looking to protect its market share against a bargain-brand. Every day we see new bargain airlines, bargain consumer products, bargain cars, bargain food, and bargain electronics. Be careful of the panic reaction when you deploy short term tactics in price discounting and couponing. It may only deplete profits. You can hold the line, but can you afford customers who defect to lower price brands. As Jacqueline Kennedy once said, “I don’t react, I respond.”

Seek your uniqueness

There are no right answers, but a journey of discovery will help determine your strengths, weaknesses, and uniqueness. In a recent book by Dr. Caroline Leaf, called, The Gift In You, this PhD. Researcher discovered there are seven layers of thinking processes in our minds. The seven layers of thinking processes are: Intrapersonal, Interpersonal, Math/Logic, Visual/Spatial, Music, Kinesthetic, and Linguistic. Starting from the most dominant thinking process, when a new thought enters our mind it will loop into the seven layers in a different sequential order. For example, someone who thinks first in music will be able to read between the lines to give meaning to it. While a logic/math dominant thinker performs pattern recognition in huge numbers and reasons in a precise order. We all see the world differently and think differently. We are all unique and so are our companies and the way we collective process our thinking. As such it’s fruitless to be like someone else such as Steve Jobs. None of us can think like him and nor do we want to. We must learn to be ourselves by knowing our uniqueness and using it to your advantage.

Are you an elephant or a cheetah?

As Shakespeare once said, “To thine own self be true.” In other words, do you have the competencies to compete as a Bargain-Brand?

When launching a new product you’ll have to adjust and adapt quickly. Is your company a cheetah that can move quickly and adapt to consumer and market changes? Or, are you a slow moving elephant that makes decisions at a sluggish pace? A slow moving elephant should think twice when competing against fast moving bargain-brand cheetahs.

GM was slow to introduce Saturn to compete against the Japanese, but Intel was quick to respond to constant AMD attacks. At first, Intel’s bargain-brand chips (Celeron) performed poorly, but they responded quickly to the market and beat AMD at their own game.

Will you divide and conquer yourself?

Julius Caesar’s strategy to overcome the enemy was to divide and conquer. When launching a Bargain-Brand, you might be dividing your resources and placing your entire organization into a weak position. Without sufficient resources, people, and focus, both your premium and bargain brand products could become diluted and fail. If the Bargain-Brand fails then you’ll have the added cost and time of cleaning up plus the cost and time to rebuild the Premium-Brand.

It cost GM $15 Billion to launch and maintain the Saturn division. Delta Airlines launched Ted Airlines and lost billions too. These two elephants didn’t understand their uniqueness nor able to response quickly to market changes. Rather they copied the competition thinking that would satisfy the market.

On the other hand, fifty years ago, Anheuser-Busch was facing a low-price assault from regional players which opened up a whole new …

Essential Elements of a Good Social Media Manager

Essential Elements of a Good Social Media Manager

When hiring any social media manager to take the lead role in your campaigns, it is essential that you find the right person because they will be representing your brand.

If you are an organization that deals with a great number of social issues, a person’s lifestyle and online presence may have a huge effect on choosing the right candidate.

List the qualities and skills that you consider the most important must have’s for your brand and narrow your candidate choices based on those factors.

When you have narrowed down your choices, prepare what you want to know in advance, so you will already have an idea of what type of individual you are looking for.

Here are things that you may wish to consider asking when you interview them:

  • Do you feel comfortable taking the lead role in creating projects alongside our other departments in order to gain valuable company experience?

The answer to this question is vital because many social media managers do not understand SEO principles and this can cause a huge conflict if the posts and content they are posting is effecting SEO and vice-verse.

These two departments need to work seamlessly together for effective marketing to take place.

  • Do you like to work in a variety of different inbound marketing arenas?

If the social media manager is only able to post to platforms, but lacks skills in basic design, email marketing and content areas, they will not always be the best choice for your company.

Social media marketing involves a great deal more than just posting. Posting is what virtual assistants do, not managers. Managers should posses at least some of the skills that are listed in the job specific details below.

  • Are you up to date on today’s latest on line trends? Are you energetic, creative and resourceful? Do you work well with others and are comfortable taking some direction?

This question is very important as the position requires the person to get along with others and find a variety of creative approaches in order to get the job done.

Social media marketing plays an integral role in assisting the corporate management team with overall brand strategy and requires the individual to communicate, promote and implement future marketing strategies through a variety of in bound marketing concepts.

These inbound marketing strategies may include some or all of the following skill sets; graphic design, e-mail marketing, promotion, SEO content, event planning and other services and tools that the company utilizes in order to maximize its brand initiatives. If the candidate is not able to utilize a variety of different applications, software and mediums, it is unlikely that they will be effective.

Many workers in this field think they are managers, just because they post on platforms, this is not so. They do not understand the concepts of marketing, they are only engaging, there is a difference!

Specific Skills Required to be a successful manager:

  • Social media marketing candidates should be expected to have some of the following personal skills:
  • A strong understanding of branding products and customer service.
  • Excellent communication skills, and the ability to sell ideas through a variety of different means.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Basic design and graphic skills.
  • A strong understanding of online marketing concepts such as video marketing, social media, email marketing and content creation.
  • Exceptional writing and editing skills, as well as, the ability to adopt the style, tone, and voice of the brand’s blog platform.
  • Excellent organizational skills to be able to work independently and manage projects with many moving parts.
  • Be sociable and engaging with other people.
  • Possess exceptional leadership and group building skills.
  • Socially responsible, humorous and open minded.

While not every skill is as important as the other, and let’s face it, not every one can have all the skills required, it is expected that the candidate possess a least a considerable number of them.

The same can be said about the specific job skill requirements, which are:

  • The ability to work and communicate with the appropriate department managers to launch corporate strategies.
  • Create or gain access to content that helps articulate the value of the brand.
  • Conduct Product research and marketing trends analysis.
  • Provide detailed information, training, and product marketing reports to sales reps and other departments when necessary.
  • Properly start up and maintain numerous social media accounts such as, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Google+, etc under the guidance of the marketing manager.
  • Provide communications on social platforms in a consistent, on-brand voice.
  • Search and join brand related social media platforms.
  • Create and evaluate social media strategies.
  • Assist in growing the company’s social media reach.
  • Submit various types of articles on a wide range of topics for its’ blog.
  • Proper writing and editing skills are a must.
  • Contribute to long-form content projects
If The Harry Potter Character Dumbledore Is Gay, Is He Also A Pedophile?

If The Harry Potter Character Dumbledore Is Gay, Is He Also A Pedophile?

At a recent public book reading in New York, in response to a question from a child, JK Rowling, author of the extremely popular “Harry Potter” series of books recently stated that Dumbledore, headmaster of Harry’s school and Harry’s staunchest and most powerful supporter was gay.

In general, gay adult sexuality is not a normal topic for children’s works. Because the books are principally targeted at children, and the fact that no trace of this situation was made plain in any of the books, the declaration shocked and disappointed many readers. There was a definite outcry from fans forced to completely re-think the motivations and actions of one of the most beloved characters in the story line. Rowling responded to the objections, commenting: “He is my character. He is what he is and I have the right to say what I say about him.” Others simply took this odd retroactive statement to be a publicity-scooping attempt to draw attention and increase book sales for “The Deadly Hallows”, the final installment of the Harry Potter series.

The statement that Dumbledore is gay does require some re-evaluation and rethinking of the story line in the Potter books. The idea certainly has the potential to change the motivations and underlying relationships of the characters. Over the last several years, as they were published, I read the books myself and enjoyed them. However as I sat down to re-consider the story in light of a gay Dumbledore, a far more sinister question came to me. If Dumbledore was written to be a gay man, is he also a closet pedophile? Will that be JK Rowling’s next publicity sucking, earth shattering declaration? While only a very small percentage of gay men are also pedophiles, in re-reading the books with the idea that Dumbledore is gay, one is forced to ask if Dumbledore might well also be a pedophile.

Rowling said last Tuesday she found it “freeing” to out Dumbledore, adding that the passages about him will mean different things to different readers. “I think a child will see a friendship and I think a sensitive adult may well understand that it was an infatuation,” she said. While this statement was not specifically made concerning Harry, it well could have been.

The term pedophile is commonly used to denote an adult who is sexually attracted to adolescents or youths below the local age of consent. For anyone who has read the books, there is no question that there is a very strong bond between Dumbledore and Harry. Rowling makes it plain that the Headmaster has obvious feelings for Harry over and over in many passages in a number of the books.

If fact, there is an extended passage in book 5 where Dubmledore tells Harry that he purposefully stayed away from Harry for that school year because he cares “too much” for him. With a gay Dumbledore who could possibly be a pedophile, I am forced to think about what caring “too much” for Harry really means. It is a question that as a reader I do not want to ask, nor do I want to know the “real” answer from Ms. Rowling. While nearly all readers have until now interpreted Dumbledore’s feelings as bonds of fatherly friendship, a reinterpretation may be necessary given Dubbledore’s new gay status and Rowlings quote describing Dumbledore’s feelings as infatuation rather than friendship.

Pasages in the final book make it clear that Dumbledore has a dark side and that he has made choices which he does not wish to discuss with Harry. One is forced to wonder about the extent of those “dark choices”.

Finally, there are the obvious questions about a gay man who seeks employment as a teacher among school age children, and spends his entire adult life there. While this alone does not prove the fact, similar life paths are commonly chosen by many gay pedophiles.

So is Dumbledore actually a closet pedophile? There is little question that he follows many of the paths and makes many of the choices of individuals who are. I personally hope that Ms Rowling does not come out with that supposedly “enlightened” pronouncement in the future, but it would not surprise me.



Source by Chris Ralph

What is an Independent Oil and Gas Company?

What is an Independent Oil and Gas Company?

The basic definition of an Independent Oil and Gas Company is a non-integrated company which receives nearly all of its revenues from production at the wellhead. They are exclusively in the exploration and production segment of the industry, with no downstream marketing or refining within their operations. The tax definition published by the IRS states that a firm is an Independent if its refining capacity is less than 50,000 barrels per day on any given day or their retail sales are less than $5 million for the year. Independents range in size from large publicly held companies to small proprietorships.

Many independents are privately held small companies with less than 20 employees. The Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) recorded in a 1998 survey that “a large percentage of independents are organized as C Corporations and S Corporations at 47.6% and 27.7%, respectively. A total of 91.4% of responding companies are classified as independent (versus integrated) for tax purposes. More than one fifth of responding companies reported their stock is publicly traded.”

Independent producers derive investment capital from a variety of sources. A 1998 IPAA survey reports that 36.2% of capital is generated through internal sources followed by banks 27.8 % and outside investors (oil & gas partners) at 20.3 %.

Supplying Future Energy Needs

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) states in their Annual Energy Outlook 2007, “Despite the rapid growth projected for biofuels and other non-hydroelectric renewable energy sources and the expectation that orders will be placed for new nuclear power plants for the first time in more than 25 years, oil, coal, and natural gas still are projected to provide roughly the same 86-percent share of the total U.S. primary energy supply in 2030 that they did in 2005.” In this report the EIA also predicts consistent growth in U.S. energy demand from 100.2 quadrillion Btu in 2005 to 131.2 quadrillion Btu in 2030.

Maturing production areas in the lower 48 states and the need to respond to shareholder expectations have resulted in major integrated petroleum companies shifting their exploration and production focus toward the offshore in the United States and in foreign countries. Independent oil and gas producers increasingly account for a larger percentage of domestic production in the near offshore and lower 48 states. Independent producers’ share of lower 48 states petroleum production increased form 45 percent in the 1980’s to more than 60 percent by 1995. Today the IPAA reports that independent producers develop 90 percent of domestic oil and gas wells, produce 68 percent of domestic oil and produce 82 percent of domestic gas. Clearly, they are vital to meeting our future energy needs.



Source by Chris Jent

What is an Equity Broker?

What is an Equity Broker?

Those who wish to buy or sell shares of stock in publicly traded companies do so by engaging a stock broker. The broker receives a commission, and in some cases, a monthly fee for managing the account.

When most people use the term “stock broker” they more than likely are referring to an equity broker. However, there are some differences between the two. Equity trading, which includes hedge funds and day trading, is more correctly viewed as a subset of traditional stock market trading. Equity brokers generally deal with individuals who want to invest more aggressively or who may have intricate trading strategies they want to implement. Minimum investments are typically high, and fees can be as well.

An equity broker will normally perform more extensive market research, and equity firms often have extensive, proprietary systems for trading. Many firms devoted to equities trading are established as hedge funds and lie within major investment banks.

Hedge funds are quite different from the traditional approach to investing in the stock market or mutual funds, which is to purchase shares and hold them for a considerable amount of time. Hedge funds are usually very active, and often the fund manager will take huge risks which can pay off in the form of huge profits or losses. In addition to investing in stocks and bonds, hedge funds may also speculate on foreign currency or potentially any other investment that is included in the plan or strategy.

You can also find equity brokers in firms that specialize in day trading. These private equity firms make their money by allowing select traders access to funding by the firm. Some will require that traders use the investment strategy developed by the firm, while others let the investor choose the strategy as long as their choices are profitable.

Equity brokers can be found at many different types of investment firms. The expertise of the investor, and his comfort level with risk, should determine the type of equity broker he selects.

Full service brokerage firms will usually have equity brokers on staff to assist those investors who want to take a more aggressive approach to investing. These firms offer a more “hands-on” service to the client, performing market research, monitoring accounts, and dispensing advice. Naturally, their fees and commissions will be among the highest.

Many online equity brokers offer investors the ability to choose their own investments and strategies. Establishing an account with this type of broker is usually quick and easy. You can enter your trade orders 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, although they cannot be executed until the market opens.

Due to the fact that equity brokers typically make many more trades than those who buy and sell for investors who are holding for the long term, fees can mount quickly. It is not uncommon for investors to find one-fourth to one-third of their profits have gone to the equity broker or his firm. Investors should perform their due diligence on all investment opportunities, but with the fast-paced nature of equity trading, it is even more critical to do so before making the investment.



Source by David Patullo

What’s the Best Pre-Workout Supplement? How to Navigate the Market

What’s the Best Pre-Workout Supplement? How to Navigate the Market

To the outsider, the world of nutritional supplements can be overwhelming at first glance. There are so many options to choose from: powders, pills, capsules, gels, rubs, wraps, the list goes on and on! Everybody is coming at you from every angle trying to sell you everything! One of the most contraversial categories of supplement is pre-workout. People seem to be either completely for pre-workout, or completely against it. Some believe that you are “weak” if you “need” something to get you in the mindset to workout.

However, the thing about supplements is they are just that: supplements. They are meant to enhance diet and training, and synergize with it, not stand on their own. Pre-workout capitalizes on your body’s existing energy systems, optimizes them, and then further enhances them. Think of it like pouring fuel on a fire.

Another thing to consider is the hormonal benefit of intense training. The more intense your workout, the more of a release of testosterone and growth hormone by the body in response. Pre-workout intensifies training, which can then lead to more growth in the long term through improved hormonal output combined with the intense diet and training.

So what should you look for in a pre-workout supplement?

Generally, most pre-workouts are stimulant based and have some combination of stimulants, performance enhancing compounds, and nootropics. The lacking products tend to focus on one of these areas and not the others.

For example, there are some products that are 100% pure stimulants. This would include things like caffeine, rawscoline, geranium oil, etc. You feel the energy from the stimulants and have a more intense workout. Studies show that caffeine increases work output.

Some products have great performance enhancing ingredients: fully dosed profiles of beta alanine (3+ grams), and generous doses of citrulline malate which is great for pumps and NO release (this increases GH levels post workout) as well as lactic acid clearance, which means more endurance! These products are great, but sometimes lack the kick that the stim products do.

Catch 22: Stimulant based products give you more intense focus, and energy buttttttt… Pump and performance based products increase blood flow – stimulants are vasoconstrictive and are therefore counterproductive to a pump.

What does this mean? It means that the best products need to be a combination of all categories of products. Strong stimulants, enough to get you going at 5 am and ready to crush it. Moderate performance enhancing products – enough citrulline and beta alanine to provide a functional dose and increase performance significantly (as opposed to mega dosing it).

The final key is nootropics – focus and mood boosting ingredients that synergize with the stimulants and provide an amazing mind-muscle connection. Compounds like choline bitartrate and huperzine A. Choline bitartrate is an acetylcholine source, which means it increases levels of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine in the brain – increasing focus, memory, etc. Huperzine A is an acetylcholinerase inhibitor – it inhibits the enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine in the synapses. So the two ingredients synergize, combined with stimulants provide a long lasting and intense focus.

Always do your research, and if you ever have any questions about the formula of a product, e-mail the manufacturer – if they can’t answer the questions you probably should shop elsewhere!



Source by Samuel Wotton

Top 10 Best-Selling Motorcycle Brands

Top 10 Best-Selling Motorcycle Brands

In addition to the Japanese Big Four (Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and Yamaha), the list of top-selling motorcycle manufacturers includes companies based in Italy, the U.S., Austria, and the UK.

Honda

Honda’s motorcycle division sells more than 15 million motorcycles annually, which makes it world’s leading manufacturer. One of the factors driving the company’s sales is its popularity in Asian markets. Yet Honda also dominates in North America.

Ducati

The Italian brand headquartered in Bologna manufactures motorcycles since 1935. Ducati is known for its powerful sport bikes. The company has a long and successful racing history, which started in 1951. Today it spends over 7% of its revenues on racing business. The brand belongs to Audi through its subsidiary Lamborghini.

Harley-Davidson

Great 20th-21st century history and exhilarating riding experience give Harley-Davidson the status of the legend bike company. This brand is familiar almost to everybody, even those who have never ridden a bike in their lives.

Yamaha

Yamaha bikes are known for excellent performance, ride quality and comparatively easy handling. Yamaha is almost as successful as another famous Japanese manufacturer, Honda. Moreover, the number of dirt bikes it sells exceeds Honda and Yamaha combined.

Kawasaki

The Motorcycle & Engine division of Kawasaki Heavy Industries gained recognition as a manufacturer of a wide range of bikes, from very small to sport ones. These motorcycles are loved all over the world for their powerful and reliable engines, capable of developing great speed. There are production sites in Japan, North America, Philippines, Indonesia, and Thailand.

Suzuki

One more representative of the Japanese Big Four. The GSXR 750 and the DR 400 are among the most popular Suzuki motorcycles. The company has over 35 production facilities in more than 20 countries.

KTM

During its first years the Austrian motorcycle manufacturer specialized in 2-stroke and 4-stroke off-road motorcycles, but in the course of time its product range grew wider. In addition to dirt bikes, it now includes street motorcycles and sports cars. The brand belongs to CROSS Industries AG and Bajaj Auto Limited.

BMW Motorrad

BMW is one of the oldest motorcycles manufacturers. The company’s first bike was made in 1923. BMW Motorrad is famous for its road bikes, sports-touring bikes and sport bikes. Some of the most well-known models are the GS Adventure, the S 1000 REFRIGERATORS, and the K1600.

Triumph

The largest motorcycle maker in the UK, Triumph specializes in road bikes that belong to the cruiser, naked, and sport classes. The Triumph brand is owned by BMW.

Victory

Victory is a comparatively new brand, it started production of motorcycles in 1998. Its large-displacement cruisers are famous all over the world. The company based in the U.S. has its final assembly facility in Iowa.



Source by Fiona Anosova

The Importance of Social Media Marketing Today

The Importance of Social Media Marketing Today

Marketing is essential to any business and is generally referred to as the most important aspect of any business strategy. Large companies spend millions of dollars to hire reputed agencies to handle the marketing of their business whereas smaller companies rely on more creative and cost efficient methods. In the extremely competitive world of today, social media marketing is the new ‘in’ thing and definitely here to stay. In a nutshell, it means using social media such as blogs, community sites, video sharing sites etc. to market a product or a business.

Certain popular websites like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and YouTube which have more than five million visitors everyday are considered to be an important hub for marketing. Promoting your business using these sites is a very attractive business proposition since they offer a huge amount of steady traffic everyday. In today’s world, social networking is extremely successful and social media marketing is very important to a business because of the sheer number of people that access these sites regularly.

The reasons why this type of marketing is so important, or rather, essential for a business are many. Firstly it is a low cost investment when compared to the other options available, offering many links to your site for free. Social media is generally free to use but marketing the same thing through conventional methods would cost you thousands of dollars. These sites get a lot of traffic and they in turn generate traffic to your site. Also it acts like a word-of-mouth concept that people tend to believe when compared to commercial advertising.

To make a lasting impact on the user and build a successful business any entrepreneur should be adept in social media marketing. There are a number of factors to keep in mind while promoting your business online so as to maximize its potential and achieve realistic real time sales. Lehman Hailey believes marketing through social media is a potent method that will make your site profitable over time.

Following are a few pointers that an entrepreneur would do well to remember while utilizing the immense scope of this type of marketing. Firstly, one should always try to give a clear account of the company’s product or the contents of the business instead of exaggerating and claiming the impossible because this discourages people from visiting your site whereas a more realistic picture generates slow but steady traffic over time. Secondly, it is important to post as many links as you can wherever there is a provision to do so.

Any business becomes profitable only if the end product promised by the company or the entrepreneur is really as good as advertised and produces customer satisfaction. There is no sure-shot formula for success using marketing since it only gives more visibility to the business and the end sales depend only on the efficiency of the product. However, social media marketing is an important tool that, when properly used is a highly beneficial and promising enterprise.



Source by Lehman Hailey

Traditional Marketing – An Introduction to Offline Marketing – Part 1

Traditional Marketing – An Introduction to Offline Marketing – Part 1

The Art of Marketing as a whole

Marketing is the process of establishing which products or services that might attract certain customers, and then determining what strategy to use to promote them. This mutual procedure is intended to create value for customers and build strong customer relationships in order to obtain trust and recognition within a business. The main purpose of marketing is “to attract” a target audience or specific individuals who are interested and want your product or service that you offer. That then leads to the primary goal of any business which is to ultimately make sales, or in other words, “to sell”.

While referencing to customers, it can be said that they are the main focus of marketing activities. It is pertinent to ALWAYS do these three key things:

  1. Identify the customer
  2. Maintain the customer
  3. Satisfy the customer

With these key factors in mind and the impact that advertising has on the potential success or failure of a business, it is correct to say that marketing in general is one of the most vital pieces of the business world.

Traditional Marketing

Traditional marketing is also referred to as “offline marketing”. The term traditional simply means the “passing on” of something, such as beliefs, customs, or practices. So when you think of traditional marketing, you should comprehend that it consists of techniques and strategies that have been used for a very long time. In addition, you can think of its relative term, “offline marketing”, as any method or means of promotion that does NOT include the internet.

Traditional marketing mainly focuses on the company and the product, as where online marketing centers on the customer and their interests. So basically, you would use traditional marketing to expand your business and strive to distribute your product through the three main geographical levels (local, regional, national) and ultimately worldwide. There would apparently be less focus on the actual customer and their needs although some might disagree with this logic.

The Four Ps

The four Ps, also known as the “marketing mix”, was developed by Jerome McCarthy after the term became widespread in the early 1960s. The four Ps are the four essential ingredients of marketing. They incorporate the following:

1. Product – All businesses revolve around a product or service. You must first develop a unique and quality product or service that you intend to sell. Here are other aspects:

  • Brand name
  • Purpose
  • Style
  • Safety
  • Packaging
  • Support
  • Warranty

2. Price – Second, you should investigate the price value of your competition (if any), and then determine the cost of your own product or service that’s both affordable and will earn you revenue. Other things to consider are:

  • Discounts
  • Types of payments
  • Seasonal pricing

3. Place – Third, you have to decide how you will distribute your product to the customers or where you will offer your service. More decisions to be made include:

  • Market coverage
  • Inventory management
  • Warehousing
  • Distribution centers
  • Order processing
  • Transportation

4. Promotion – Lastly, the marketing and campaign portion comes into play. You must determine who you will market to and what advertising methods and strategies you will use to acquire potential prospects. This is the most important piece of the marketing mix and can make or beak a business. Additional things to take into account are: 

  • Workforce
  • Publicity
  • Marketing budget

All four elements of the marketing mix must be completed and well thought out before you can think about starting any campaign for your product or service.

Is traditional marketing beginning to slowly disappear?

Traditional marketing is becoming a lost element in the business world. Many people are now marketing their businesses online as the number of internet users grow substantially every year. To give you a quick insight, there are currently over 1 billion people who use the internet today. I mean how can the offline market even compete with that? But just because a new revolution has arisen doesn’t mean the old ways are no longer effective. Traditional marketing can still produce plenty of customers and lead to major profits if it is used correctly. So don’t think that you should just market your business only on the internet. The idea is to incorporate both online and traditional methods to see maximum results.

Things to remember

The crucial points to keep in mind is that in order to achieve success in the business world, you must always do the key three factors of identifying, maintaining, and satisfying the customer and you have to constantly fulfill the four Ps of the marketing mix. The more often and the more effective you complete these two tasks, the higher amount of profits you will see yourself earning in your business.

About the Author



Source by Devin D. Haller

Does Your Website Follow "The Iron Law of Marketing?"

Does Your Website Follow "The Iron Law of Marketing?"

Many websites unwittingly ignore ‘The Iron Law’ of Marketing. They begin by explaining features about the company, e.g. how long they’ve been in business, what their premises look like, etc. The truth is that most visitors to your website couldn’t give a hoot about the features of your company! What they primarily care about is WIIFM.

WIIFM stands for ‘What’s In It For Me’. It’s ‘The Iron Law of Marketing’. Unless visitors to your website can quickly see what your business can do for them, the chances are that they’ll be gone quickly, typically in seconds. Once they’re gone, they’re gone – probably never to return.

WIIFM – ‘What’s in it for me’. Are we really so self-centred? Well, yes, I’m afraid that we are. Please don’t feel guilty – it’s just the way we’re hard-wired. Sure, farther down the line, we care about others. But, first and foremost, we’re concerned about how we survive and thrive. That’s simple evolutionary common sense.

If you want your visitor to stay on your website, you need to heed ‘The Iron Law of Marketing’. You need to give your visitors WIIFM – ‘What’s in it for me’. But the paradox is this: the ‘me’ shouldn’t be you (i.e. your premises, etc). It should be them – your visitors.

You need to put yourself in your visitors’ shoes and address what they’re interested in, what they might want, how you may be able to help them.

Most companies are concerned to get ‘targeted traffic’ (i.e. potential clients to their sites) through SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) and other clever stuff. And this is important – very important indeed.

But if most of your prospective clients leave your website in a few seconds, isn’t that just a little bit silly? (And we’ve all done it, me too!) Isn’t that rather like filling a bucket with water… which just runs out of all the holes in the bottom?

It’s not rocket science! We simply need to show visitors to our websites the benefits of doing business with us. And we need to do it in a fun, interesting manner.

If possible, we should pack our websites with ‘FREE gifts’, so that visitors derive immediate benefit. One of the most valued gifts is FREE information which you give to your visitors and which will help them.

I’m amazed when I see websites created and run by people ten times more clever than me… yet doomed to failure because they broke ‘The Iron Law of Marketing’ – WIIFM, ‘What’s In It For Me’.

Often it just needs a change in focus and some alterations for your website to be much more successful. If you disregard WIIFM, it will become your worst enemy. If you take heed, it will become your best friend.



Source by Michael M Ward

Considerable Factors Involved in Product Creation & Marketing

Considerable Factors Involved in Product Creation & Marketing

The niche you have chosen should allow creation of more than one product or service. With the technological advancements in the hosting industry, from automated control panels and scripts that simplify creation of accounts, to complete turnkey solutions; there is no need to worry about spending time on the real products sold to the customer. The main ones are keyword selection, sales copy principles, graphics, affiliate programs, product creation, online payment processing, auto responders, and search engine optimization.

Once you’ve earned money from this type of information product business, you can invest in the creation of your own products if you want, or start offering more informational products that allow you to sell your knowledge. But the creation and production costs of a similar big ticket in sequence product, although higher, are still pretty low. A key by-product of this process will be the creation of 3-D, Computer Assisted Design art.

The Association for Financial Professionals permits the following activities for repatriating funds: Research and Development activities, advertising and marketing programs, hiring and training new recruits, acquiring patent and other rights to intangible property, improving transportation, funding capital investments with the purpose of job creation and job retention & funding product responsibility or environmental claims.

It prohibits certain activities like: Tax payments, Payment of executive recompense, Payment of dividends, Redemption of stocks, Debt investments and Portfolio investments. Therefore, before repatriating the money, you must consider whether it is worth or not.

Checklist on what artist and product development necessitate includes: Exceptional vocals, musicianship and/or songwriting skills, Continued education and enhancement of musical skills, Quality equipment, Performance ability, Image creation and maintenance, Plan of action, goal setting, excellent promotion materials including photographs, press releases and artwork, Business management skills, Marketing, Publicity and Promotion knowledge, Online and Offline Professional management, Basic knowledge of recording, producing, engineering, and mastering, Basic knowledge of manufacturing, distribution, and sales online, brick and mortar and air-play, Good choices in members, staff and advisors, Physical and mental preparedness, Basic knowledge of finances, accounting Law and legal issues etc.

The goals for doing so are for the product owner to: Communicate the whole, Determine and communicate when releases are needed, Determine what functionality is sufficient for each release & focus on business value derived from the releases. The delivery team on the other hand will see the whole, learn about the steps to realize the vision, learn the business priorities, provide technical input to the roadmap and provide estimates for the projected features. The salesperson must lead the prospect through the various decision criteria needed in order to secure a sale. Whether your idea is the development of a product, launch of a service business, or even the creation of an event or program for a non-profit, creativity is the root of all entrepreneurial efforts starting with the vision itself.

People quickly learn to spend their time on marketing and product creation, rather than repetitive tasks. Apart from empowering companies and individuals, there should be a particular focus on identifying labor intensive businesses that have the potential to make a significant and positive impact on employment creation as well as those businesses that have a product or service offering for export markets with the final objective of booming local economies.



Source by Kamal Kant Gupta

6 Creative Ways to Market Yourself As an Insurance Agent

6 Creative Ways to Market Yourself As an Insurance Agent

Marketing yourself as a qualified insurance agent is one of the most important components to achieving success. For an agent, success is often measured by the number of clients who make a decision to buy the products and the services that you are offering to them. Proper marketing will help you increase your customer base, but you have to be creative about it in order to stand out from the rest of the agents whom you are competing against. Here are six clever and creative ways that you can make that happen.

Develop a client appreciation program.

When your clients feel like you appreciate their business, they will spread the word to their friends and family. Find a way to show your regular clients your appreciation (Thank You card periodically, free upgrade of service, etc.) and you’ll see your success grow.

Use direct mail.

Sending out postcards and letters to your current clients and potential leads will help expose your products and services to a wide audience. Don’t send out boring form letters, though. Be creative so you can get their attention.

Create a newsletter.

Newsletters are great ways to keep your clients up to date on the latest developments in the insurance industry. There may be new products on the market or important news that they will find interesting. Add a personal touch by adding something about your family or a special greeting. Send out the newsletter monthly or every other month, but be consistent about it either way.

Develop a website.

If you want to compete in today’s business world, it’s essential to have a website for your clients and potential leads to visit. However, it shouldn’t just be any website. You should hire a professional web designer to develop the website so it looks great. It’s also ideal to have a section of your site which explains the products and services that you offer as well as a link that customers can click on to get in contact with you.

Be responsive.

The quicker you respond to a client’s questions or a lead’s phone call, the more successful you will become. By responding quickly, you will show them that you appreciate their business rather than making them feel like a bother.

Publish articles online.

One way to market yourself as an insurance agent is by publishing relevant articles online. You can create a blog, post to ezines or other websites so you can get your name out there. When potential clients and existing customers do a Google search for your name, they will find all of the articles you have posted and they will be more likely to trust the information that you give them.

These are just a few of the ways you can market yourself as an insurance sales representative and increase your success as a result. Find a few agents in other areas who are successful and ask them for their secrets. If they don’t live in your area, they will be more likely to help because they won’t see you as a direct competitor.



Source by Daniel Hagy

New Product Development Outline For New Energy Bar – Product Life Cycle and Pricing Planning

New Product Development Outline For New Energy Bar – Product Life Cycle and Pricing Planning

The new PowerBar GelBar combines two growing market segment products into one – the growing segment of energy drinks and the growing, yet moving quickly towards mature, market of energy bars. In this stage of product development, it is necessary to focus on the product life cycle stage of the bar, the upcoming stages and our contingency plan for each as we reach it, marketing mix actions that can be taken to promote the product, and touch briefly on the initial pricing strategy.

Product life cycle stage currently

Despite the fact that GelBar combines a growing product with a growing/mature product, I believe GelBar is in its introduction phase. However, because of the nature of the ingredients, it is a non-disruptive product that will likely mirror a low learning curve product. This means the introduction stage will be short and fast. Because of this, I expect competition for the GelBar quickly once the product is launched.

There is some logic behind claiming that the product is in fact an extension of the growth stage for PowerBar and a way for the firm to stave off the decline in the maturity stage. From a macro perspective, this is true, but the product itself must start in the introduction stage. Because the firm will view the product as new growth product, GelBar will enjoy market exposure and a large advertising budget potential that will allow it to penetrate the market quickly and with large customer awareness.

Planning for future product life cycle stages

Introduction – Launch product with intensive marketing efforts and skimming pricing. Package the product in flashy packaging to attract customers to purchase the product. Launch in limited markets to test customer reactions and correct problems in the product prior to mass market.

Growth – During this phase, I expect multiple competitors to enter the market. More flavors of the GelBar can be introduced and the promotion would focus on the differences between GelBar and the competition. We will expand the locations that offer GelBar as we roll out the product launch across multiple markets.

Maturity – Continue to introduce new product variations until GelBar reaches a full product line. Stock the product in all stores with an impulse buy section, including gas stations, athletic stores, grocery stores, and others.

Decline – Slowly cut the production of the bar and offer alternative bars to encourage customers to switch while reducing the cost of switching (i.e. reduce the risk of losing according to the prospector theory). Begin to replace the GelBar with the next innovation at select outlets to test the new products.

Promoting GelBar using the marketing mix – three strategies for pushing the product forward

Product – With multiple bars and energy drinks on the market, product packaging and ease of use are paramount. GelBar should be promoted with a product size similar to a Snickers to facilitate the idea of a snack on the go. The physical packaging of the bar should emphasize the combination of the ingredients inside. Possible combinations include two-tone packaging that focuses on the orange color of 5 Hour Energy and the gold of PowerBar or black and white to visually emphasize the two distinct ingredients.

Bundling of the product is also important. The bar should be available in both singles and pack form. This pack form would allow the serious athlete to purchase 6 to 10 bars at a time for a reduced price per bar. By increasing the amount of bars available to purchase at a single time, GelBar appeals to higher-end athletes as well as discount membership stores such as Sam’s Club or Costco.

Promotion – Because the initital market for GelBar is high-end sports enthusiasts, advertising will be limited to clearly relevant sporting events. Possible events and end user groups include community sporting events, high school sporting events, corporate-sponsored sports, and professional sports athletes.

As the product matures in the product life cycle, general advertising will be used. By getting sports athletes on board at an early stage, natural promotion will happen as fans see athletes using GelBar at sporting events. Additionally, GelBar can hire celebrity endorsements from these initial professional sports adopters. This will increase GelBar’s visibility to the average consumer and will help to increase sales as the placement of GelBar is also expanded into the growth and maturity stages of the product life cycle.

Placement – GelBar is meant for serious athletes, thus placement initially will be in high-end sports shops and venues such as professional or amateur league sporting events. These limited test markets will allow us to correct customer complaints with the new product before rolling it out to grocery stores and health food stores regionally. Because we feel GelBar may be both a planned and impulse purchase, the product should be stocked in two …

Who Should Learn Digital Marketing

Who Should Learn Digital Marketing

To make it simple, digital marketing is nothing but marketing of any product or service done via internet. It is a kind of “new-age” marketing technique which is different from the conventional or traditional systems of marketing. It is different from traditional marketing due to the fact that digital marketing offers the advantage of monitoring the entire aspects related to your marketing strategy. And of course this monitoring can be accomplished in a real time basis.

Nowadays, people spend a considerable amount of time over the internet. The boom of social networking websites in recent years has attracted more and more people to their desktops, laptops and mobile devices. According to recent surveys, it is estimated that an active Facebook user spends an hour on Facebook each day on an average. People nowadays spend more time on internet compared to the past decade. Internet has become an indispensable part of the lives of many. Digital marketing too exploits this situation to the maximum.

Digital marketing techniques are implemented via many means. These techniques make use of search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing and also adopts methods like email marketing, creating websites, banners etc.

Advantages of Internet Marketing Over Traditional Marketing

• As already discussed in the introduction, the greatest advantage of digital marketing is that it facilitates the scope of monitoring online campaigns, which is otherwise not possible in the case of traditional marketing techniques.

• You may make the analysis of your online campaign right from the start and can determine its progress that too in real time. Real time analysis can be done in matters related to determining traffic to your website, knowing conversion rates and many others.

• Creating inquiries, generating visitors, reaching your target audience, branding related possibilities and many other benefits are associated with digital marketing. Traditional marketing is devoid of all these benefits. Once you have implemented a campaign in traditional marketing system, it is difficult to perform tweaks or other customizing options.

• World wide exposure – The information that you share can be accessed from any part of the globe. Even you can determine or make a preference over your target locations.

• Compared to traditional marketing, the cost of setting up a digital campaign is very less.

• In order to implement a digital marketing campaign, your essential requirements are a computer, internet connection and an in-depth knowledge in digital marketing.

Who should attend internet marketing training program?

Attending a internet marketing training program is a “must do” for anyone would like to get into online marketing. Ranging from a company CEO to a housewife, rather anyone with a basic knowledge of computer and internet can pursue this course.

• Marketing professionals – Marketing professionals who own a BBA or MBA degree, Business development Executives, or other experienced individuals who have been in to marketing must take up this course. For marketing professionals, taking up digital marketing training program should not be viewed as an option to consider later. It is high time that you become aware of the latest digital marketing concepts, without which it is difficult to survive in this ever-changing digital era.

• Individuals who are currently implementing the traditional marketing strategies and who would like to make a “switch-over” – Marketing strategies have to be changed according to the changes that we perceive and feel in our society. Sticking on to the same old marketing tactics may prove fatal and may affect your business prospects in a negative way. Those individuals who would like to try out digital marketing are all invited to this training program. Even merging traditional marketing techniques with web marketing may work out in certain scenarios. After all, the perquisite to attend this course as already indicated is only the basic understanding of computer and the internet.

• Company CEO – The CEO can monitor the marketing strategies adopted by his/her company and can coordinate the implementation procedures with the entire team. Having a though understanding of digital marketing concepts and technicalities makes CEO capable of providing his/her contribution and suggestions to the marketing wing.

• Beneficial for housewives – A vast majority of housewives have ample time at home after performing their routine works. Those housewives who are interested to make some extra income from online marketing can certainly take up the digital marketing course. For example, paintings, art works, handicrafts, dress materials etc can be marketed via online with the least expenditure.

• Students – Students pursuing BBA, MBA and other marketing oriented courses can take up digital marketing course as a part time course along with their studies. It serves as an extra bonus at the time of interviews and can boost up your profile. Moreover, the individuals shall be eligible for placement in IT companies as SEO analyst, Digital …

Target Markets of the Hand Bag Business

Target Markets of the Hand Bag Business

Have to try shopping online? Take a look at the products being promoted in there. Take note that there are a lot of gadgets and fashion items being sold in there. Well, we know very well that the fashion world is one of the fast changing, versatile, and trendy sections in the society. The trends of clothing and accessories vary every season of the year.

There are a lot of businesses and shops around which is in line of fashion trends. Hand bag, for example, is one of the most specific businesses in line with fashion. However, we might wonder about the target market of these hand bag products. Well, we might think there is minimal number of target consumers. However, if you notice the kinds of business in hype today, most of the consumers prefer specific, personalized, and detail-oriented goods. This article will be dealing more about the basic market for hand bags and the prospect market it is trying to penetrate.

Women of all ages are one of the targets. Women are known to have a great inclination to fashion and they think of everything that is color coordinated. What they wear should match with their shoes and their bags. Well, for those who have more in life if they shop for a particular colored dress, they also shop for matching shoes and bags with the same color as the dress so that it will be color-coordinated. The market for hand bag relatively increased as the fashion world busts to the maximum of promotion and advertisements. Thus, keeping your hand bags advertised will really do you good.

If we cannot go directly to the consumers, we can target the distributors and dealers around. We can offer them great discounts and freebies if they will tie up with us. In the same account, they will promote our product, at the same time we promote their product as well. This is one way for us to be known and to have some kinds of connection. At some point, we consider it a healthy competition since there are times where their products are out of stock and they have to get ours, and some of their products are what we need. It is a give and take relationship.

On the other hand, aside from reaching the higher market, we could also target the small scale ones. The masses are also one of the target markets that could bring us maximum profit. It is not just for the elite. The masses can purchase hand bags if they want to. The designs should not be limited to those who have more in life, since everyone has an equal right to purchase any goods or product they want. Masses can be a very huge target market that could expand and expand as long as they are satisfied with the product.

These are just some of the target markets of hand bag business. There are other sectors that can be considered though these are the basic ones who contribute most in the sudden boost of the handbag market.



Source by Nuche Villaneuva

How to Get Your Mobile Marketing Campaign in Order

How to Get Your Mobile Marketing Campaign in Order

When was the last time you used only your desktop computer to shop for products and services online? If you’re like most people, it was before the emergence of mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. Even grandparents have grown accustomed to using their smartphones for calls, texting, shopping and interacting with family and friends on social media. If they’re doing it, you can count on just about everyone else in the world is doing it as well. If you’re serious about reaching your target audience, then mobile marketing is an absolute must. One way of doing this is using local SEO methods to help consumers find your company.

There are a ton of ways you can cater your marketing campaigns to mobile users. A great place to start is with your website.

Mobile-Friendly Design

Hopefully, you’ve already updated your site with a mobile-friendly design, which means that it’s responsive and has dynamic-serving to ensure site speed. A responsive web design is the most effective way to cater to internet users, no matter what device they’re using. It will also help boost your site rankings in search engines, which place heavy emphasis on mobile-friendliness. You can learn more about this from some of the best local SEO companies in the area.

Page Speed is Everything

Besides appeasing the Google gods, having a fast website will also keep your visitors happy. This means a lower bounce rate. Numbers show that 40 percent of internet surfers bounce from a site when it takes longer than three seconds to load.

You can find out how your pages are doing by using tools like PageSpeed Insights. It will check for mobile and desktop load times, and it will outline which features and elements are an issue. Another tool to consider is called GTmetrix.

To learn more about any speed concerns you come across, you should check out your AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) data. You can have AMPs used in your web design to help boost up the speed of your pages for mobile devices. This is nothing more than a stripped down version of HTML, allowing the pages to run more quickly and smoothly. Stats show AMPs tend to load 15 to 85 percent faster.

Claim Your Business… Everywhere

There are business listings just about everywhere on the web, including Yelp, Yellow Pages, Bing Places, Foursquare and CityGrid. If your business is listed in these local directories, then claim them as your own and fill in all the current, up-to-date information. Why is this important? Because people really do use these sites to find products and services locally (using mobile devices). And don’t forget about Apple Maps, which is used by iPhone users.

Keep Watch of Google Analytics

Here, you can find out information about your mobile stats, which you can review by time, day and device. See how people are accessing your site and how long they’re spending on it. Which pages are performing better than others? If you have a blog, this can help you determine which type of content you should continue pushing out to attract more mobile users.

Publish Content that’s Mobile-Friendly

Speaking of content, you need to make sure to create it so that it’s mobile-friendly. This means making it scannable using bullet points, short and concise paragraphs and implementing links and share buttons. Your meta data should also be short and to the point. Keep in mind the schedules of users when you publish – for instance, publish shorter content during the morning and afternoon, when they are most likely commuting to school or work, and the longer pieces in the evening and on weekends.

Consider Using Google My Business

Being found in the search engines is the key to obtaining long-term incoming traffic. If people can’t search for your business and actually find it, then there’s a lot of work that needs to be done. Local Search Engine Optimization is key for helping users find companies like yours. This can be done using Google My Business, which allows you to fill in all of your business details, such as contact info, address and hours of operation. This is then displayed on Google Maps and Search. You can edit your information from one platform, as well as add photos and reply to comments and reviews. This is something that can help you with the management your online reputation.

Appealing to the mobile market is key for boosting your site traffic and ranking. Use the above tips to enhance your mobile marketing campaign today!



Source by Hugh Benjamin

Cause-Related Marketing vs. Strategic Philanthropy

Cause-Related Marketing vs. Strategic Philanthropy

Six months ago, I had communication with a national corporation about their consideration to developing a corporate strategic philanthropy program. They didn’t have one at all. I kept thinking, imagine the impact this corporation could have in communities where they have a presence! WOW! It would be phenomenal for them and communities. Let me say this corporation is big. Okay, they are huge.

Well, they were kind enough to let me know that they had just hired a public relations firm to create one for them. I thought to myself, “What a pr firm? No please no.” But what to do next, just wait and see what they come up with. Just one month ago, I visited the corporations website. There it was, just as I thought was going to happen. They have a program, but it is a cause-related marketing program. I was crushed and let me tell you why.

Cause-related marketing programs are based on two things. One is a one-on-one partnership between a company and a charity. The other is it’s product driven/sales promoted. The program works as long as there is no negative publicity about either the company or the charity and it works so as long as the product moves. In a nutshell, cause related marketing has a shelf-life. While folks contend that any giving is a good thing, these type of programs are not sustainable. The message is not necessarily one that stands over time nor does the giving.

On the other hand, strategic philanthropy programs are created by individuals or companies whose roots are based in philanthropy. Philanthropy is a field with its own set of principles, methods, professionals and message. Strategic philanthropy is not based on product or services and is not promoted by sales. At its core, it is based on the fundamental principle of being responsibly committed to changing lives and the world today and for future generations.

If your company is serious about making an impact and giving back, you’ve got to be serious about the type of giving program you have and how it works. It should be value-based and sustainable. Consumers are savvy folks, just like you and me. Don’t think they are fooled by giving that is essentially marketing-driven. If you want marketing, hire a marketing strategist. If you want philanthropy, hire a philanthropy strategist.



Source by Maggie Keenan, Ed.D.

Green Campaign – Its Role in Creating Awareness Among Malaysian to Protect the Environment

Green Campaign – Its Role in Creating Awareness Among Malaysian to Protect the Environment

Nowadays green campaign is one of the hot topics among the Malaysian. The main objective of green campaign is to create awareness among the public to protect our environment. Green campaign not only popular in Malaysia, is also very famous in foreign country. In Malaysia there are a lot of organization organizing green campaign such as Environmental Protection Society Malaysia (EPSM), Malaysia Environment NGOs (MENGO) and Treat Every Environment Special Sdn. Bhd. (TRESS). Furthermore, from the researcher research, there also few business company supporting on green campaign such as Panasonic, TESCO, and Nippon weather paint company.

EPSM was founded on 11 January 1974 at University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur. The society founded by a group of Malaysian who concerned about protecting the environment. EPSM is non-profit organization it runs by an elected executive committee on an entirely voluntary. The main objective of EPSM is to control the activities that will cause harm to the environment. In EPSM organization, public relations (PR) roles help to do publicity for the organization and at the same times help the create awareness among the public.

MENGO was formed under Danish International Development Assistance in November 2001. MENGO was an active society’s, it can give impact on the decision making at the levels of Malaysia society. The organization gives support to the Government of Malaysia on environment policies. The mission of MENGO is to protect the environment and maintain the agenda level same as local, national and international. The organization had organized a campaign on 19 April 2009 in Penang Bosch Hall to discuss plastic bags should be ban or not to ban.

TREES is a local non-profit environment organization. The organization founded in February 1995. The main purpose of TREES is to educate public the important of protect our environment and reduce negative impact for our environment. TREES organizations had organized two successfully programs in this year. On 14th February 2009 they had organized Valentine’s Pledge for Mother Earth, the program use to encourage the public send a photograph with a caption that how you protect the environment so that can share with each others. Furthermore, on 13th March the organization organized community recycling campaign at Ampang, this activity help to reduce the air pollution. There are a lot of people participated in these two events. The events are very meaningful and bring benefit to our environment.

Panasonic Sdn. Bhd. is one of the electronic company’s had designed out an eco-refrigerator to support green campaign and the product have successfully launched in Malaysia. It’s able to be self adjusting electricity regulator that reduces the wastage. Compare with other brand of refrigerator the Panasonic refrigerator able to save 40% of the electricity. It helps fight global warming and save money all the time. Panasonic electronic company in United State America also concerns for environmental protection and sustainability. The company’s practices prudent, sustainable use of the earth’s natural resources and the protection of the environment. Together with many benefits associated with the use and enjoyment of new technologies comes with responsibility that do not take lightly. The company hopes that this commitment able to protecting the environment continues to earn public trust and support.

Besides that, TESCO hypermarket had designed an eco-friendly recycle bag. The purpose is to encourage the consumer to use the recycle bag instead of using the plastic bag. Those consumers who using the recycle bag when purchase the goods can gain extra point for the member card. Furthermore, all the Tesco in Penang have applied the same rules that set by the Penang state government. Tesco hypermarket in Penang state not give out plastic bag for the consumer on every Monday. In foreign country, Tesco is the most environmentally friendly supermarket. Tesco had wins a award for being the best big company for corporate environmental strategy, has invested £115m in energy-saving technology for its stores in the past two years and is working hard to create the zero carbon supermarket of the future.

Malaysia Government also supporting green campaign. On 28th March 2009 the government encouraged whole Malaysian to switch off their lights from 8.00pm until 9.00pm. KL tower and 8TV is one of the company’s supporting this program. In this program, PR practitioners help the government to spread out all the information and do publicity on the activities. Besides, to support green campaign Penang state had already ban the consumer using plastic bag on every Monday. The purpose of this program is to encourage the consumer use recycle bag for those consumers who require for a plastic bag on Monday need to pay 20sen for it.

Thus, University Sains Malaysia (USM) an university in Malaysia shows support on green campaign. USM have organized a lot of campaign encourage the student to take care of our environment. Besides that, USM also …

Newsflash – You Can Write Your Own News Release

Newsflash – You Can Write Your Own News Release

Submitting a news release is one of the more effective methods of grabbing the attention of your target market and the search engines. Anyone can write a news release but not all news releases are effective. When you write a news release your aim is to get noticed by the people searching for your business, services and/or products and to ensure that the search engines list your release on the search results for people to find.

It is possible to write a great news release that generates qualified traffic and strengthens the reputation of your business if you follow some time proven guidelines. We will be taking a closer look at the guidelines to follow and the structure of a news release.

Guidelines:

• Grab the Attention of Readers – The headline and summary of a news release should provide a clear picture of what the release is about.

• Tell People Who You Are – Your business, product or brand name should feature prominently within the first few paragraphs of the release.

• Be Clear, Concise and Informative – Beware of slang or the excessive use of hype and stay away from technical language or jargon. The release should not be viewed as an advertisement and should be neutral and objective.

• Use Current Events and Examples – Tying in to current events or using examples of how your company can solve problems or provide solutions is very effective.

• Stick to the Truth – Provide facts and don’t exaggerate. You can severely damage your brand and reputation if you over promise and under deliver.

• Provide a Call to Action – It is very important to provide the readers with a reason to visit your website. Link to a page on your website that contains more information and entice readers to click on the link.

• Check for Readability and Grammar – Always proof read and spell check the release and ask your colleagues to provide feedback prior to submitting the release.

Structure:

• Headline – Contains your keywords and should aim to grab attention.

• Summary – Provides a brief description of your business and a summary of the information contained within the release.

• Dateline and Lead Paragraph – Provide answers to who, what, why, where, when and how.

• Body – The meat of the release containing neutral and objective information consisting of 300-800 words.

• About – Brief description of your company.

• Contact Details – Contains your company name, website details, telephone number and email address.

You can release news about any changes or developments within your business that you want to share with a broader audience. New appointments, partnerships, product launches, social causes and new services are newsworthy and could be written about. News releases should form part of your broader search optimization strategy and it could become a vital part of your business if done correctly. There are some great news release websites that you could approach for assistance (e.g. PRWeb.com.)



Source by Heinrich Muller

The Core Components of a Marketing System!

The Core Components of a Marketing System!

The core marketing system of a company comprises the suppliers, company, marketing intermediaries and target customers. The success of the company is also affected by competitor’s presence and other segments of public. The management has to watch and plan for all these factors to serve and satisfy the specified set of needs of a chosen target market.

  • Supplier selection:

A company has to choose suppliers who offer the best mix of quality, delivery schedule, guarantee and low cost. Say, a firm involved in manufacturing confectioneries has to procure sugar; cocoa, caramel, milk powder etc., Labor, equipment, fuel, electricity and other factors of production are also to be obtained. If the company’s product has a good market, it can opt for continuous production. If it is a growing firm, it cannot go for voluminous production, but only supply goods against confirmed orders. In either case, the choice of suppliers is determined by one major factor called ‘cost’. Of course,one can never compromise on quality and so the company has to decide whether to purchase the inputs or make its own.

The relationship of a company with the suppliers should be of a long-term nature, since any sudden change in the supplier’s environment will have a substantial impact on the company’s marketing operations. Sudden supply shortages, labor strikes and other events can interfere with the fulfillment of delivery promises to customers. This will result in sales decline in the short run and loss of goodwill in the long run. Back orders lead to loss of customers and in course of time their trust. The business firms must plan for alternate source of supply to avoid the risk of over-dependence on any one source of supplier.

  • Company

The marketing department has to work in tandem with the other departments of the company, namely, finance, production, personnel and research and development, while designing and implementing its marketing plans.

Finance department – has to be consulted for the funds available to carry out the marketing plans.

Production department – to gauge market demand and to decide on the supply of products based on demand.

R and D – new product development.

  • Marketing intermediaries:

Channel members are the link between the company and the customers. Agents and middlemen find customers who are wholesalers or retailers to take on the title and sell the merchandise. Also there are physical distribution firms who assist in stocking and moving goods from the warehouse to the destinations. The marketing executives have to deal with these intermediaries prudently in order to enhance the operational efficiency of the marketing function. Logistic firms, shippers and airliners help to move the goods from one location to another.

  • Competitors:

All the business firms in a particular market segment vie for the same resources and customers. A car manufacturing company in an automobile industry has to compete with other car manufacturers as well as with two wheelers. This implies that competition may come in different forms and each company has to identify potential threat from competitors, study their activities and capture their moves to win over the competition.

  • Public

A company has to keep a watch on people’s preferences to satisfy their requirements and also companies are expected to give back something to the society in the form of social welfare measures. People belonging to different culture groups with differing attitudes, lifestyles and tastes have a great impact on a company’s ability to achieve its objectives.

Markets whether homogeneous or heterogeneous must serve the purpose of satisfying the customers by providing more than what is being asked for. This discussion is with relevance to the factors that rule the micro environment of a marketing plan and there are greater forces in the outer environment looming large, say, social, political, legal, environmental and the like, which have to be tactically handled by the management to overcome the challenges and exploit the opportunity.



Source by Shyamala Sankaranarayanan

Services Marketing

Services Marketing

Services marketing has incurred an explosive amount of scholarly research in the last 20 years, however since 1986 there has been no debate concerning the notion that services are distinct from products, and thus deserve a special approach, a set of concepts and a body of knowledge (Brown, Fisk, & Bitner, 1994). This essay will explain the distinguishing features of services marketing, giving examples where possible. It will begin by defining services marketing and giving some background knowledge on its divergence from product marketing. It will then examine the four characteristics of services, and then finish with an explanation of the extra P’s found in the services marketing mix.

In the last century there has been a large shift in marketing thought; evolving from a goods-dominated view, in which tangible output and discrete transactions were the focus, to a service-dominant view, in which intangibility, exchange processes, and relationships are central (Vargo & Lusch, 2004). Vargo and Lusch define services as the application of specialized competences (knowledge and skills) through deeds, processes, and performances for the benefit of another entity or the entity itself. Four idiosyncratic features of services will now be given, highlighting why services marketing is different from basic product marketing.

Arguably the most distinguishing feature about services is their intangibility. Services are defined in (Zeithaml, Bitner, & Gremler, 2006) as “deeds, processes, and performances”. None of these are physical objects in which a customer can take ownership of, even though during a service physical evidence will be apparent in the form of things like medicine the doctors prescribes to you, the photo taken of you riding the rollercoaster, or the food on your plate in a restaurant. This invisibility creates a number of issues for marketers. Firstly there is no stock, making it hard to manage supply and demand. Secondly services cannot be shown or displayed to customers, making it hard for marketers to advertise the quality of the service. And finally, because services don’t physically exist, there is difficulty in patenting them, making it easy for other firms to copy your service.

Another notable aspect about products is that on average they stay the same. If you buy a Ford Focus here in Australia, and then go and buy the same model in America, chances are they will both be exactly the same. Services are different in that they are heterogeneous, meaning they differ with each use. For example a wildlife tour will never be the same twice, not only because of the random and unpredictable nature of the animals, but the guide may be in a different mood, the weather will have changed, and there will be different customers each time. These factors make it harder to consistently give quality service, which is important to marketers because customers will have a particular set of expectations in mind, based primarily on what was promoted in the service and previous experiences in the particular industry.

Another distinguishable feature about services is the fact that it’s both produced and consumed at the same time, as opposed to products where customers do not see how the product is manufactured. A good metaphor for this is being at the theatre. Consumers can be compared to an audience, where they watch actors (employees) perform on stage (physical location like a business store) amongst props (physical objects like chairs, tables, pot plants etc). The actors are ‘live’ and performing (producing) at the same time as the audience are watching (consuming). This brings us to the concept of interactive marketing. In a service, operational staff carries out much of the marketing function (Klassen, Russel, & Chrisman, 1998), and marketers are left to the advertising and promotion.

The final distinction that differentiates services from products is their perishability. While some products perish very quickly (like water balloons), services simply cannot be stored, saved, resold or returned at all. Marketers main concern would be the procedure for when things do not go as planned. Customers cannot simply return the service and ask for another one; it is up to the service provider to offer the customer some kind of compensation. If passengers are forced to wait a long time for their flight, employees could provide free coffee and refreshments while they wait, in an attempt to make up for their failing service.

With product marketing the marketing mix includes the four P’s; product, price, place and promotion. Services use the same elements plus three more to help account for their unique nature.

Firstly there is people, which comprise of everyone that influences the buyer’s perceptions, including the buyer themselves. Customers have an active role in the production, and thus can influence the outcome of their own service or the service of others. For example a large family with screaming children interrupting a young couples romantic dinner …

7 Benefits of Advertising Flyers Person-to-Person

7 Benefits of Advertising Flyers Person-to-Person

Any business owner that is experiencing financial difficulties from the recession, or anything else for that matter, should definitely consider adverting with flyers. You can benefit from this type of advertising in several ways. Here are seven of them to help you determine if this method of advertising is right for you.

1) Instant results. There’s no waiting for your advertisement to be published when advertising flyers person-to-person. Your sales will increase the same day as you launch your advertising campaign. This is the number one reason why every business owner should be thinking about using this form of advertising right now.

2) Low priced. No matter how large of an advertising budget you have to work with, this form of advertising allows you to promote your products and services within your means. Advertising flyers person-to-person is the cheapest form of flyer advertising. You can design and print your flyers in house to save hundreds of dollars on unnecessary costs.

3) Quite simple. Other forms of advertising require months of planning and preparation. This strategy eliminates the timely process of searching for professional graphic designers and copywriters. Simply put, you can launch your advertising campaign the same day.

4) Consumer feedback. Talking to people face-to-face off the streets allows you to ask serious questions about your business without having to hire an overpriced survey service. You can find out what people really think of your products and services, allowing you to immediately correct any serious issues you may have. On the other hand, this also gives you the opportunity to inform people of all the positive changes and improvements you have made.

5) Viral injectors. Advertising flyers person-to-person on the streets is proven to generate word of mouth buzz and referrals. In fact, a struggling business can be back on the road map to success within weeks of launching the first promotion. There’s even the possibility of your promotion being picked up by your local newspaper.

6) Moral boosters. Advertising flyers on the streets to people is a great way to liven up the spirits of your team when times are hectic. The positive energy from your promotion will bolster the performance of your staff and spread to your customers like a wildfire. Your team will feel a since of pride as people start to complement them about the positive changes you made in your business.

7) Highly Effective. Since your talking to people in person, response rates can be as high as 50% in comparison to other forms of advertising. In addition, you’re more likely to convince consumers into purchasing whatever it is you have to sell with this strategy. The results are always phenomenal considering the price and time it takes to advertise flyers.

Advertising flyers person-to-person is just one of the ways you can recession proof your business while making a sizable income in the process. Think about using this strategy to sell your products and services if your advertising budget is small, and you need a way to generate sales quickly.



Source by Robert Nugent

Part-Time Lawn Mowing Business While Working a Regular Job

Part-Time Lawn Mowing Business While Working a Regular Job

No matter what the economy, the grass still grows. There is always someone near by who needs their lawn mowed and cannot do it themselves. These folks have a problem and you, the full-time employee wanting to start a part-time lawn mowing business, have the solution. They can pay you to mow their yard. Problem solved.

I often get the question of whether you can start your lawn mowing business part-time in the evenings and on weekends and keep your full-time job. The answer is a big yes!

The question is can you do it? If you have lots of energy, enjoy being outdoors and working in your yard, and can handle just 5 to 10 extra hours of physical work each week, you can start a part-time lawn mowing business and keep your regular job.

People who work 12-hour rotating shift schedules are in a terrific position to run a lawn mowing business part-time while keeping their full-time jobs because they have so many days off.

Marketing

First, you need to find some customers. Write a flyer using word processing software, print it, take it to your local copy shop, have 25-30 copies made, and distribute them around your neighborhood within walking distance of your house. You may want to use a half-page flyer so you can distribute to 50-60 houses. Include what you offer the prospect (lawn mowing, edging, cleaning off the concrete), your name, best phone number to contact you, your address so they know you are a neighbor and how much you charge. Since you are new to the business charge on the lower end of the average rate other lawn care professionals charge in your area. Five dollars cheaper than average may get your neighbors to stop using someone out of the neighborhood and start using you instead.

Another reason to start with your neighbors is they know you or know of you and we all want to help other people, especially people we know. Since these folks are close by, you get to go out, knock on doors and meet your neighbors while marketing your business to them. Smile, introduce yourself and tell them which house is yours or what street you live on and get to know a little about them and some things you might have in common. Hand them a flyer at the end of the conversation and move on to the next house.

Keep this up until you have at least one person ready for you to go home, get your equipment right now, come back and work that day and are pulling out their checkbook to pay you. If this happens, stop marketing that day, service your new customer and earn some money. Continue marketing the next day.

When you have the number of customers you think you can handle, stop marketing daily and only doing a little occasionally or when someone asks for your information. You will need to keep a few flyers on hand to give out. Be on the lookout for yards that overgrow and see if a lawn service comes to mow them. These folks may need someone closer who will service their lawn regularly. Be sure to visit them and ask.

Equipment

Do not buy any commercial equipment or go into debt. You only need the mower you use on your own lawn, a gas-powered string trimmer and blower to get started. If you have an electric-powered string trimmer and blower, you can still use them, but make sure the customer knows you will need access to an electric outlet and you will need a very long extension cord.

Alternatives to gas and electric-powered trimmers and blowers are the cordless rechargeable models. They are less expensive than their gas-powered cousins, cheaper to operate and much more environmentally friendly. If you have electric equipment that requires an extension cord, you will want to replace it with cordless electric or gas-powered equipment as soon as you earn enough money mowing to do so.

Starting within walking distance of your home eliminates the need for a truck or trailer to haul equipment to job sites keeping costs down. If you live within walking distance of the job you can put your equipment and gas can in a wagon or cart and pull your lawn mower along by hand. If you are willing to do this extra manual labor you are more likely to succeed because you are not afraid of hard work and not prone to overspending.

Earnings

One of the biggest reasons to have a part-time lawn mowing business is you make significantly more money for the time you spend working than at most other part-time endeavors.

If you charge $50 to mow the grass, edge and clean up and you can do 5 lawns after …