Month: September 2017

A Brief History of Television Advertising

A Brief History of Television Advertising

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It All Began With Radio

Broadcasting was originally developed as a means for companies to sell radios. But once commercial entities realized that many households were listening to their radios a significant amount of time every day, they started to explore this medium as a way to get their message across to the masses. If one has to choose a single event that began the era of radio broadcasting, it would probably be the radio program broadcast by station WEAF in New York City on August 28, 1922 This was a ten-minute advertisement for suburban apartment housing. By Christmas of that year, several major New York department stores joined the fray and were running advertisements for their stores.

By the late 20’s radio advertising had advanced in a dramatic way. It was now dominated by advertising agencies who took control of the schedules by buying the available air time and selling it to their customers. They also handled the creative aspects of the commercials and programs and in fact even created entire series that were designed to sell one product or another. These efforts paved the way for the genesis of television advertising that would begin in a few more decades.

The Era of the Single Sponsor

Full time telecasting didn’t really take hold until 1948 as it took that long for the United States to recover from the Depression and World War II. At that time, the number of television sets reached the critical mass necessary to be considered a medium that could reach the masses. As television was a totally new phenomenon – i.e. offering both sound and moving pictures, the advertising industry moved into this arena cautiously as they were not sure what methods would work best to promote their clients products on television. In other words, should it still be treated as radio advertising but with pictures thrown in or would an entirely new approach need to be taken to reach the television audiences in a meaningful and effective manner?

After study and many surveys, the advertising agencies determined that the most effective way to reach consumers with a strong message would be by creating shows that featured a single product or a line of products from a single company. From this concept arose the typical television shows of the 1950’s including such titles as Kraft Television Theater, Colgate Comedy Hour, and Coke Time. As with radio, these television programs were produced by advertising agencies for their clients rather than the studios as is common practice currently.

This practice worked really well for the clients for a while. But as the television gained more popularity and there were more people watching it, the television networks were raising the costs of doing business (i.e. more eyeballs = more total dollars spent to reach them all) and this upward pressure on the cost of delivering a production over the television (plus the ever increasing costs of creating new content) forced a massive change in the relationship of all the parties: the advertising agencies, the clients/sponsors and the television networks. A solution had to be found if this very powerful advertising medium was to continue to be cost effective for the sponsors.

Enter the Era of Magazine Concept Advertising

NBC executive Sylvester L. “Pat” Weaver came up a with a solution that would work and would also be very favorable to the networks. He introduced the “magazine concept” of television advertising. In this arrangement, the sponsors would purchase blocks of time (typically one to two minutes) in a show rather than be a sponsor for an entire show. This idea would allow a variety of sponsors – up to four was the number imagined – for a show. Like a magazine, the networks would now control the content as no one advertiser would “own” a particular show.

Like all new ideas, this one was originally resisted by Masison Avenue but after a bit of experimentation, they found that this method would work very well for a variety of packaged-goods companies manufacturing a cornucopia of brand names, such as Procter and Gamble with such disparate products as Tide (laundry detergent), Crest (toothpaste), and Jif (peanut butter).

By 1960, the magazine concept dominated television advertising, as it has ever since. Instead of relying on audience identification with a specific show, sponsors now spread their messages across the schedule in an effort to reach as many consumers as possible. The ability to spread their advertising dollars out to reach a broader segment of the population proved to be very effective for the sponsors. Where once they were locked into a specific time block every day or every week on a particular network, they could now choose the times and the networks where they wanted their message to be seen.

This evolution …

The P-O-S-D-C Of Management – A Student Aid

The P-O-S-D-C Of Management – A Student Aid

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Pupils need every available edge when it comes to studies, whether they know it or not. They should take advantage of every bit of information available, i.e., research articles, white papers, periodicals, magazines, and yes…blogs.

This wee bit of information should prove useful to the aspiring business management, marketing, accounting, secretarial sciences, business law, and/or programming student(s). These extra tools will aid the student in his/her preparation for successful management endeavors. Management students will first need to know the P.O.S.D.C.’s of management.

PLANNING: the process of setting objectives and determining what needs to be done to successfully accomplish the assignment-mission of an organization.

ORGANIZING: the process of task assignment, the coordination of resources, team structuring, and work activities for the organization.

STAFFING: the process of building the team by attempting to attract and retain qualified people to the organization.

DIRECTING: the process that provides leadership, arranges motivational opportunities, and builds a good working environment.

CONTROLLING: the process of establishing enterprise-wide standards, analyzing results, measuring actual performance and monitoring to see whether standards have been met. Controlling also includes making the right decisions and corrective actions, if needed.

Students should also become familiar with the process of management and what is required to become a manager. The best managers are well informed and are acutely aware of team needs. The needs of the team are met with the managerial support reflecting alternatives and suggestions for a team coordinated solution.

The process of management involves planning, organization, leading, and controlling the use of resources to accomplish target performance goals. “All managers, regardless of title, level, type, and organizational setting(s), are responsible for the four functions. However, they are not accomplished linear, step-by-step fashion.” John R. Schermerhorn Jr., goes on to say…”The reality is that these functions are continually engaged as a manager moves from task to task and opportunity to opportunity in his or her work.”

While agreeing with Mr. Schermerhorn as well as several other experienced, teachers, and gurus of this profession, the ultimate goal of a manager is to help the company/organization achieve its highest performance with the utilization of resources, human and material.

Henry Mintzberg wrote, “Although the management process may seem straightforward, things are more complicated than they appear at first glance.” Ever-present e-mail and instant messages are added to his list of executive/managerial operations.

Remember my message “IT and BI”, the non-hyperbole of the marriage between Business Intelligence and Information Technology? “BI and IT virtually, methodically, and basically go arm-in-arm.” Just look around you. Technology and Management is everywhere. But in order to ascend to the highest level(s) in management, one must begin with the P.O.S.D.C. of management.

Happy Studies.

Til next time…

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Source by Gregory V. Boulware

6 Key Elements of Customer Relationship Marketing

6 Key Elements of Customer Relationship Marketing

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Customer Relationship Marketing (CRM) is a highly topical and relevant way of thinking about marketing. It is relevant because of the internet, and the impact it has had on the way marketing is carried out by businesses.

In this article, I’d like to look at six of the key conceptual elements which under-pin the CRM approach.

Element 1: Customer Differentiation

As its’ name implies, CRM is a customer centric approach to business. With this approach, a company is aiming to differentiate its’ product or service offering by customer profile. Instead of a more conventional approach, where a company differentiates primarily by its’ products or services.

Element 2: Long Term Emphasis

The aim here is to build a relationship with a customer over a period of time. This approach dove-tails very well with many Inbound Marketing strategies which are used on the internet.

This ongoing relationship has both cost and revenue benefits. On the cost side, it is almost always less expensive to market to an existing customer, than find a new one. The reason is simple; they already trust your organisation.

Element 3: Continuing Transactions

This is in some ways related to element two above. Rather than seeking one-off transactions with customers aim for multiple transactions. This may be in the form of cross-sales, add-on sales etc. Or it may be that you become a preferred supplier for a given niche product or service.

Sometimes, this is an economic necessity, as the cost of getting a first transaction is so high, that only repeat sales make the process worthwhile.

Element 4: Two-Way Communication

A core element in the building up of meaningful customer relationships is their ability to stay in touch with a company. With the advent of social media, email and SMS, this is even easier. This technology allows the communication to become more of a two-way process. And it is the customers who are just as likely to initiate a communication as is the organisation.

This is a great way to get real feedback of people’s wants and needs. And it ties in well with element one above; creating customer centric products and services.

Element 5: Retention Focus

With the CRM approach, a company is focused more on how to retain customers as opposed to simply how to acquire more customers. Aiming for a low customer churn rate is seen as highly desirable, and it is very often a cost effective way of doing business.

This feature again ties in well with the shift in power between buyers and suppliers that the internet has created. Buyers are no longer dependent on supply companies to tell them what’s available. They can go to the internet and do their own research, and share stories with other people who have used a product or service.

Element 6: Share of Values

By aiming to share a value set with their customers, companies can build strong relationships. These strong relationships translate into a clear brand identity, which transcends the ability of organisations to simply buy loyalty with advertising or special offers.

Summary

In summary, CRM is a major shift in marketing practice, from mass marketing to individualized marketing. The focus has shifted from acquiring lots of new customers to retaining and building more business from a smaller base of loyal high-value customers.

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Source by David R Durham

Agora Model – How to Apply a $300 Million Marketing Plan to Your Business and Make a Fortune

Agora Model – How to Apply a $300 Million Marketing Plan to Your Business and Make a Fortune

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The Agora model for internet business started out as an experiment 10 years ago. Agora publishing company based in Baltimore Maryland developed the model. The model has helped Agora to grow into one of the largest online newsletter publishers in the world.

What exactly is the Agora Model internet Business?

The Agora internet business model works by using direct response marketing principles to sell information products online. The winning formula is tested and applied to other niches. It is a hybrid franchise business spinning off profitable businesses based on proven business tactics.

The model proved successful creating a 300 million dollars internet-marketing business in the process.

Why use the Agora Model?

There are two main benefits to using the model: the first is you are able to market your products online. When you market your business online

  • You can sell at high profit margins because your cost of production is low
  • You can work from any location and time zone
  • You can start your business with as low as $1000

The second benefit is you can become an info publisher. Information products are niche products. Because…

  • They have high perceived value (webinars, online courses, home study courses, boot camps)… so you can charge high prices
  • Your cost of production is low, because you can outsource most of your staffing cost( ghostwriters, graphic designers).
  • Your cost of delivery is low to zero ( you are sending electrons via email)
  • Your customers get instant delivery.
  • You can have your sales department on autopilot

If you are like me,who believes in starting business the smart way-low risk highly profitable-then the agora model is for you.

The 3 keys to success in the Agora Model internet business

  • Drive traffic to your website
  • Capture visitor information (lead capture)
  • Follow up with email marketing and make sales.

Let us look at the 3 aspects of this business model in details….

The first step in the Agora model is to drive traffic to your website. You can drive traffic to your website by; blogging, co-registration leads, search engine optimization, joint venture deals, Pay-per-click Advertising, newsletter advertising and article marketing. Some of the above-mentioned ways are free and others will cost you money.

The bottom-line is you want to have prospects and visitors coming to your website as soon as possible.

When you start getting traffic to your website, you are able go to the next step in the Agora model….

To capture your website visitor contact information and build your list in the process.

You do so by persuading your visitors to sign up to your free ezine.

The key to success here is….you need to understand copy writing.

Copywriting is the art of writing so your customers make the decision to buy from you.

This step is the most important step in the agora internet model

The axiom copy is king applies…when you have know how to get to the right prospects…because with copy converting the right prospect to… buy from you is easy.

Why is this important?

Until you get visitors to your website and build, a relationship…your chances of growing your business is low.

You can only start to sell your products when you have customers.

The bottom line for step two is to build relationship with your prospects.

The third step is to follow up your prospects. The third step is mutual to the second, because you need to build relationship with your prospects-before you can follow them up.

Your in-house lists of customers are more responsive to your sales promotion….. because you have built a relationship with them.

What is the secret to building a relationship with your house list?

Send them valuable information………..

This means you offer them free actionable advice that solves their problems and frustrations.

When you are able to offer free useful advice and promote your products to your house list…..your sales and net profits will explode in no time.

We have looked at the agora model for starting an internet business.

We have also seen the keys to long-term success with this model of internet business.These keys have produced multimillion-dollar sales for Agora Inc.

The good news is you can apply this model to your business starting today.

Rich Schrefen, internet marketing expert and CEO strategic profits sums up the Agora internet model this way…

Step 1: Develop a multi-million dollar repeatable formula for selling nearly free information at 1,000%+ markups.

Step 2: Find new niches to apply the formula to.

Step 3: Repeat as needed (in their case to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars a year)

Do you see the big picture?

Put your hands up… if you want to apply the Agora model to your business…

I will because it’s the wisest decision you can ever take.

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Source by Akinniyi

The Debate Continues: Offline VS Online Marketing

The Debate Continues: Offline VS Online Marketing

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Why does the debate over offline vs online marketing continue? Since the advent of the Internet, business owners, marketing experts and ecommerce gurus have debated the pros and cons of offline vs online marketing. Traditional media outlets argue that print and broadcast media reach a larger audience. Experts in web marketing argue the benefits of marketing to a very specific market segment. Business organizations tout the human aspect of networking events and face-to-face meet ups.

The truth is, when discussing offline vs online marketing, both venues have their place. Both provide specific results and benefits that the other misses. When combined in an effective marketing plan, the two methods can compliment each other, provided you have the budget to support efforts in both arenas. However, not all of the old offline vs online marketing arguments are still valid today, decades after the Internet first changed the business world.

For the small business owner and home-based solopreneur, budgetary concerns create a deep divide when considering offline vs online marketing. For these individuals, the issues between offline vs online marketing are not merely conceptual or based on the potential return on their investment. Small budgets and limited start-up capital necessitate finding the least expensive methods for marketing products and services. While the debates over market penetration, market reach, and message delivery rage on, these entrepreneurs must focus on cost.

As more readers and shoppers look to the Internet for information and solutions to consumer needs, the arguments presented for offline vs online marketing become thinner and carry less weight. Today, consumers reach for their computer keyboard, rather than a phone book. They search online for products to meet their needs, rather than watching television commercials or browsing sale papers. As such, business owners with an understanding of internet marketing gain a greater advantage over those who focus on offline marketing venues.

Internet marketing efforts, especially those centered around social media, search engine marketing, and website conversions, are often free or have a considerably lower point of entry than offline efforts. In considering offline vs online marketing, few options provide the kind of flexibility and low start-up requirements as internet marketing. Viral videos, social media shares, and search engine results now replace television commercials, radio spots and print advertisements.

Rather than spending hours rubbing shoulders at boring networking events and stuffy business meet-ups, savvy business owners use social media profiles and automated tools to engage with potential customers. Instead of balancing peek broadcast times with cost, your marketing message can be set up to automatically reach targeted customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Many online businesses can be marketed while the owner still works a regular day job, forever ending the offline vs online marketing debate.

With an easier point of entry, lower risk, and the ability to automate many marketing tasks, new online entrepreneurs can easily see the benefits and drawbacks of offline vs online marketing. Internet marketing is simply easier, less expensive, and when done properly, more effective than traditional marketing efforts in the offline world. Even novices can get started with a profitable online business with just a little basic knowledge and the right tools.

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Source by Frank Demming

Ethical Sourcing and Its Benefits

Ethical Sourcing and Its Benefits

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Ethical sourcing refers to, ensuring that the products and services being sourced are developed in safe and hygienic environment by laborers who are paid fair wages and well treated to work during legal hours. It is a critical component of corporate social responsibility. The main goal here is to use a supplier who incorporates principles of morality in production conditions, including proactively trying to minimize harm to and/or exploitation of the environment and labor. When done correctly, ethical sourcing minimizes the risk of failure considerably within the supply chain.

Key points to ethical sourcing:

Here are some key points that organizations should follow when sourcing products and supplies ethically. They include:

a. It is important to visit suppliers frequently to check if they are doing, what they say they are doing. Look for, if their production is hygienic, safe, and sustainable.

b. Check if the supplier will be able to deliver products with the same quantity and quality for several months down the line.

c. In case, if you are not able to visit the supplier personally, then make sure you ask them the above key questions. If possible, visit another company that source from the same supplier to check the quality of products supplied by them.

d. Look around for necessary information about the supplier, and check their websites too.

e. Word of mouth- check what other similar manufacturers are doing and from where do they source from.

Benefits of ethical sourcing:

Early adopters of ethical sourcing gained a lot through this practice. With technological advancement, ethical sourcing is gaining advantage now-a-days in a much larger scale. Such benefits include:

a. Market image:

Perception about a company in the minds of a consumer and their buying habits is largely influenced by how an organization conducts business. The last thing an organization wants is negative or adverse publicity. A small child labor issue or environmental issue can have a far reaching impact on an organization’s public image apart from its market standing.

b. Bottom line impact:

Better supplier relationship, improved cost structures, and reduced risk exposure are the most common benefits that companies gain from ethical sourcing. The reason is that, these companies put more effort in allocating time and resources to make sure these supplies are up to or more than moral standards, thus providing organizations to reap all these benefits.

c. Cost advantage:

When sourcing supplies ethically, companies focus on product safety and improved process controls, thus enabling better monitoring of supplier scorecards and contract handling. This provides companies with the potential to minimize suppliers and above all, product/service failure rates will fall down, thus improving the overall cycle time. This factor is very important during declining sales or recession times as Chief Financial Officers are under the pressure to minimize cost and enhance margins.

Ethical sourcing can definitely provide the much needed margin improvement during tough economic times. Sourcing ethically is not a new-fangled approach, but is a potential channel that organizations can implement it to enhance their public image and minimize waste.

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Source by Thomas M Johanson

Introduction to Commodity Pyramid Trading

Introduction to Commodity Pyramid Trading

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This article discusses the how to to profit from commodity pyramid trading.

These key points will help you learn this technique:

  1. What is Commodity Pyramid Trading?
  2. Commodity Pillar Trading Comparison
  3. Commodity Pyramid Trading Comparison
  4. Commodity Pyramid Trading Useful Tips

1. What is Commodity Pyramid Trading?

This is a method of trading commodity futures contracts in such a way that when the profit from a single trade equals the current margin for the commodity, the profit is used to self-finance an additional futures contract. This self-financing process can take either of two methods: Pillar trading or Pyramid trading.

The Pillar trading method involves adding one futures contract to your position during each self-finance round, while Pyramid trading adds one futures contract – but from each active futures contract with each self-financing step. This results in a doubling of your position during each self-financing step.

Both pyramid trades and pillar trades (hereinafter referred to as pyramid trades) should exhibit several characteristics which make them high profit potential candidates. These characteristics include:

  • The market is quiet and has exhibited low volatility for several months.
  • The margin for the commodity is relatively low.
  • The market is set up for a major move. This is evidenced by extreme commercial/public signal, as well as a 12-month high or 12-month low on the daily price chart with a likely 1-2-3 Top or Bottom price chart pattern in the process of unfolding.

A VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: The biggest danger in any futures trade is a limit move which goes against your position. With a single futures contract, this is risky enough. With multiple futures contracts, this risk is seriously compounded. However, if you monitor the market conditions (both technical and fundamental market conditions) and the financial news on a daily basis, you will generally receive a timely warning of an impending limit move which may go against your position – giving you time to close out your position before that occurs.

The Pyramid Trading Form

The Pyramid Trading Form is at the heart of helping you to successfully implement and manage these trading strategies. It contains areas that will let you monitor and track up to three commodities using this trading strategy. Each area allows for up to 7 futures contracts to be held in the pillar trade position, and up to 64 futures contracts in the pyramid trade position.

How To Identify A Good Pyramid Trade Candidate

At any point in time, there will be several commodities with differing degrees of profit potential. However, it is important that you identify the commodity which has the best chance of being a profitable pyramid trade. This means that you must perform a current analysis of all commodities to identify the commodity that meets the following requirements.

a. You must first use the Commercial/Public selection tools to identify the commodities that appear to be ready to make a major move.

b. Of these commodities, identify those that appear to be making either a 1-2-3 Top or 1-2-3 Bottom in the daily price chart. Calculate the daily 50% retracement target for each one. Also calculate the dollar amount the move represents.

c. Where applicable, use the weekly chart to calculate the weekly 50% retracement target for each commodity. Again, calculate the dollar amount the move represents if the weekly target is attained.

d. Identify the margin requirement for each commodity. The ideal pyramid trade will be one with a relatively small margin requirement and with a dollar amount profit potential that is at least three times the margin requirement for the commodity.

e. The commodity that you select must be a quiet commodity – that is, one which does not have wild price swings.

f. The commodity you ultimately select as the best pyramid trade candidate must also have enough time to allow the move to unfold. This means you need to get into a more distant month to minimize loss from commission switch requirements (which can be expensive with 16 or more contracts in your position). Select the more distant commodity contract month that has 120-180 days available until the Last Trading Day (LTD).

g. The commodity which you have selected must have a daily volume of at least 10,000 contracts for adequate liquidity. Open interest should also be 10,000 or more.

It’s important to remember that once you are in a trade, you must religiously perform an analysis on a daily basis so as to identify any changes in the original analysis that may adversely impact your trade. In addition, you should always monitor fundamental “news” which will affect the price of the commodity. For example, if you’re short Orange Juice – and Florida has a freeze warning – close your position fast!

2. Commodity Pillar Trading Comparison

The commodity pillar trading strategy is the least risky of …

Making Money in Bucharest

Making Money in Bucharest

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Whether you are a World traveler, or an expat deciding to settle in Bucharest, unless you are independently super-wealthy, you’ve probably thought about what you can do to earn income and/or occupy your time overseas. The internet today is awash with many “get-rich-quick” schemes and “retire-over-seas” plan of action kits. While all this is information is nice and in some ways functional, it almost always assumes that you are beginning with a rather large nest egg. Sometimes we don’t actually have a couple hundred grand lying around from pensions or retirements or other investments to “drop” into an apartment and “turn-key-lifestyle” at our new home overseas. So that brings us to the “I wish to create some income, maybe start a business, so what do I need to do next” people. Within the next paragraphs, you’ll get an inside look at what to expect when moving forward with your business venture.

Identifying a niche

When we [our group of expat friends] first arrived in Bucharest, Romania 4-5 years back for real estate purposes, we had all the excitement one would expect when first landing and wandering around in a land that was essentially foreign to us. We passed through all the stages of ex-patriotism, most importantly the stage where we as business owners and entrepreneurs look around and think “wow…wouldn’t THIS be a great idea for Bucharest?” While this is great fun to do and helps you spawn realistic ideas, don’t be to keen on falling in to this “trap” as I’ll call it. We’ve looked at opening fast food chains, luxury spa’s, Name Brand clothing labels, real estate offices, and more. We looked at both traditional and highly westernized business concepts. At the end of the day, we’ve found that when taking into consideration the amount of overhead versus the time for the business to actually absorb and be accepted into the local marketplace, and the amount of red-tape to get there, one may be better off pursuing other “offbeat” types of income streams. We’ll talk specifically about these off beat type plans in an upcoming post. Always keep in mind that whatever we can do in the US or the UK, the Romanians can typically do it cheaper. Not necessarily better in all cases, but cheaper… and this has a “trickle down” effect. Run your numbers accordingly.

Right now in this “worldwide economical crisis” laziness and affordability somehow go hand-in-hand. I was told twice in recent days by two different Romanians the following phrase: “Romanians don’t like to give money. They only receive. If they don’t receive they take.” I debated long and hard about referencing this in here, as I was afraid that too many people would take offense to that and say it is demeaning and insulting to Romanians. I disagree and I feel it is some important wisdom when considering a business or service of any form here. You see, the thing about that phrase is that it’s so blatantly true and honest for virtually any culture or society around the globe. Isn’t everyone’s economic well being based on receiving money rather than giving money when it comes right down to it? (Please no Charity comments here) Now clearly transactions occur, business open, and trade occurs in Bucharest… but the PRIMARY point of that phrase is that Romanians are really “tuned in” to the fact that you MUST provide value if you expect to earn any money. Period.

So what is the simplest way to identify a proper niche when living in Bucharest? Well, the basic answer is easy, as well as universal. Do what you enjoy! If you have a passion for something and are knowledgeable about the subject, you will automatically default to “providing value” for your customers. Once you begin with the passion, you’ll find your way and you’ll find your answers. There is no “secret” business that will magically grow in Bucharest because it’s different. You may decide that a landscaping company is a sure bet here, or a 1950’s American Diner, but slow down… someone else has probably thought about it, and in some instances moved forward with it, only to find that reality sets in, and the numbers just become numbers. But then again… you never know. The less passionate move on… and fast. The faux-passionate lose their asses.

What are your hobbies? What are your skill sets? What do you feel you enjoy doing that you know better than the next person? If your passion is real estate than by all means, go down that road. If your passion is writing, than talk to me… you’re in business already. Marketing? the same. Art and photography? Open a themed art gallery. Cars? Open a repair or performance shop for an iconic brand! Did you know that there is …

Marketing Strategies – Making Indirect Marketing Work for You

Marketing Strategies – Making Indirect Marketing Work for You

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What is “indirect” marketing? It is quite different than its opposite, “direct” marketing. Indirect marketing is indeed a more passive strategy. It often times happens on its own through actions that are not as aggressive and/ or channeled as direct approaches.

Direct marketing, on the other hand, is more self-explanatory. People employ direct marketing when they publish their ads in the papers, magazines, online, and on the radio. Direct marketing also takes advantage of direct mail operations and the cold calling method. Direct marketing means to literally take an active role in the selling process.

Indirect marketing though does not involve a specific product or service or goal. With this technique, one is not intentionally working to push their work onto a prospective client. You are using indirect strategies when you perform a number of related activities, such as participating in community events, writing articles for publication, engaging in public speaking events, and posting blogs on the Internet. Similarly, existing clients who have had positive experiences with your company can also contribute to your indirect marketing through their word of mouth advertising.

What business owner has not experienced some form of indirect marketing benefit? Surely you have had that certain phone call- the one in which an inquirer states that he or she is in need of assistance but is not sure if you are the one that can provide it. Many companies receive such calls, but handling them in a certain manner is crucial.

In these situations, it is a good idea to begin by having the caller identify their issue. Then you can more easily analyze whether or not you can offer the product or service that would be of benefit. If so, describing the options that you provide is necessary, but what is more is that this can be done in such a way as to accurately match the description of what they are seeking. It might be appropriate to also explain several different possibilities that you are aware of that could serve their needs.

Know that in this situation much of the credibility component of the business relationship has been established. You probably do not need to go into your background or qualifications. After all, the inquirer called your office. They basically already believe that you have the potential to assist them.

With these types of interactions, the end result may not always evolve into a sale. Be okay with this. You may not have the solution required for their unique situation. Likewise, they may have reservations about pricing or other costs or financing. Sometimes people just need time to process and think about their options before they commit to purchasing. In any case, keeping the conversation helpful, courteous, and knowledgeable can make the difference.

These random calls can be extremely affective to your business. It is always best to strive for the most positive experience on the phone as possible. Especially if your company is new and just starting out, it is very important to make sure that the nature of each call handled is done so with the best of intentions. These efforts of communication, no matter how brief, are examples of the public’s dealings with you. This is your chance to explain the basis of your work and really promote your image. Pleasantness and kindness should be the goal for all such activity.

If you are completing such tasks presently to boost your indirect marketing, but are feeling discouraged at the lack of apparent response, don’t be. Remember that this genre of marketing works more slowly and often times has to build momentum.

There are so many other ways that you can magnify your indirect marketing possibilities. You could participate in any of the following activities, such as teaching in community or national workshops, holding city offices or serving on boards and committees, volunteering, and agreeing to speak to other businesses at local events. You can also compose educational articles and the answers to frequently ask questions. These can be published on other sites online with affiliate businesses or associations. Other executives utilize the power of press releases. These can be used to circulate free or low cost reports and are available via the public contacting you.

Each marketing strategy has its strengths and challenges, and both can prove fruitful in the long run. Keep yourself conscious of indirect techniques and be sure that you are not ignoring this avenue altogether. A combination of different marketing techniques can help you to build your business the way that you would like.

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Source by Rick Sheldon

Fast Food Market Forecast – The Subway Example of Strategic Product Positioning

Fast Food Market Forecast – The Subway Example of Strategic Product Positioning

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The United States fast food market has seen a healthy rise in growth within the last three years which forecasts can be sustained. The fast food market is forecast to maintain its current growth expectations, with an anticipated Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 2.3% for the five-year period 2005-2010. This is expected to drive the market to a value of $57.6 billion by the end of 2010. Drivers of growth include increasing numbers of Americans in the workplace, which reduces the amount of time spent on preparing meals at home. In 2010, the United States fast food market is forecast to have a value of $57.6 billion, an increase of 12.1% since 2005.

Forecast Volume

In 2010, the United States fast food market is forecast to have a volume of 37 billion transactions (Figure 1). This represents an increase of 5.3% since 2005. The CAGR of the market volume in the period 2005-2010 is predicted to be 1%.

Success Factors

Success factors for fast food franchisees will include products and marketing targeted to healthier menu selections, brand consistency, low start-up costs, franchisee support, and consumer convenience. Subway ® represents a poignant example of a fast food franchisee ready for success in the future fast food market. Their strategies transcend the fast food market and apply to many other markets and products.

SWOT Analysis

Subway sandwich shops are well positioned to leverage their strengths and address reasonable threats, weaknesses, and opportunities. The table below highlights these Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.

Strengths

  • Size and number stores and channels
  • Menu reflects demand for fresh, healthy and fast.
  • Use of non-traditional channels.
  • Partnering with the American Heart Association.
  • Worldwide brand recognition.
  • Customizable menu offerings.
  • Low franchisee start up costs.
  • Franchisee training is structured, brief and designed to assure rapid start-up and success.

Weaknesses

  • Décor is outdated.
  • Some franchisees are unhappy.
  • Service delivery is inconsistent from store to store.
  • Employee turnover is high.
  • No control over franchise saturation in given market areas.

Opportunities

  • Continue to Grow Global Business.
  • Update décor to encourage more dine-in business.
  • Improve Customer Service Model.
  • Continue to expand channel opportunities to include event wagons.
  • Improve franchisee relations.
  • Experiment with drive-through business.
  • Expand packaged dessert offerings.
  • Continue to revise and refresh menu offerings.
  • Develop more partnerships with movie producers and toy manufacturers to promote new movie releases through children’s menu packaging and co-branding opportunities.

Threats

  • Franchisee unrest or litigation.
  • Food contamination (spinach).
  • Competition.
  • Interest Costs.
  • Economic downturn.
  • Sabotage.
  • Law Suits.

Competitive Analysis

Subway is not without competitive pressures. Chief competitors include Yum! Brands, McDonalds, Wendy’s, and Jack in the Box. Yum! Brands are the world’s largest, with 33,000 restaurants in over 100 countries. Four of the company’s highly recognizable brands, KFC, Pizza Hut, Long John Silver’s and Taco Bell, are global leaders of the Mexican, chicken, pizza, quick-service seafood categories. Yum! has a workforce of 272,000 employees and is headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky.

McDonald’s Corporation (McDonald’s) is the world’s largest foodservice retailing chain with 31,000 fast-food restaurants in 119 countries. The company also operates restaurants under the brand names ‘The Boston Market’ and ‘Chipotle Mexican Grill’. McDonalds operates largely in the US and the UK and is headquartered in Oak Brook, Illinois employing 447,000 people.

Wendy’s International (Wendy’s) operates three chains of fast food restaurants: Wendy’s (the third largest burger chain in the world), Tim Horton’s, and Baja Fresh. Wendy’s operates over 9700 restaurants in 20 countries, has been included in Fortune magazine’s list of top 500 US companies, is headquartered in Dublin, Ohio, and employs about 57,000 people.

Jack in the Box owns, operates, and franchises Jack in the Box quick-service hamburger restaurants and Qdoba Mexican Grill fast-casual restaurants and is headquartered in San Diego, California.

Target Markets

The increase in sales of the sandwiches has been a result of decreases in consumer interest in hamburgers and fries and increases in demand for healthier options. Sales of sandwiches are growing 15 percent annually, outpacing the 3 percent sales growth rate for burgers and steaks.

Current Marketing Program

A new breed of restaurant is making big gains against the market-saturated hamburger establishments. Termed “fast-casual,” these restaurants are dominated by Mexican chains, and sandwich restaurants offering fresh-baked breads and specialty sandwiches.

Responding to evolving consumer expectations for health, fresh, custom-made sandwiches; Subway’s marketing program addresses these expectations through a number of approaches. The most notable were the television commercials featuring Jared. These commercials emphasize the healthy aspects of a Subway sandwich by highlighting the 245 pounds Jared lost by eating a Subway sandwich diet. Subway also markets through a national sponsorship in events such as American Heart Association Heart Walks and local events such as triathlons, and children’s sports teams.

The Subway example represents marketing and product strategies that are classic examples of focusing on market demand, consumer trends, product …

5 Real Ways to Make Money Online

5 Real Ways to Make Money Online

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This has always been a great question, and there are many different schools of thought on this subject.

A person could argue products like software, eBooks, and virtual information are amongst the most marketable as they are easy to duplicate and have no shipping costs. It’s true a virtual product can absolutely simplify your post-sale process, however are they truly the best overall product strategy? In my opinion it all comes down to the demand, then the numbers. Calculate what price you can create or retain a product for and then calculate what price you can sell it for while keeping in mind advertising, shipping, and other expenses that fall between those two processes.

Determine your total costs from start to finish. I wouldn’t even consider selling a product or service that fetches me any less than 80 percent gross profit per unit, unless it had a great backend or up-sell strategy or some type of recurring subscription based profit model.

lf you find that managing inventory or working with suppliers and drop shippers is more slanted towards your personal experience then work with a product that feels comfortable with you, you will benefit from the familiarity. The importance of comfort might just be the most influential factor for me when choosing a product to wrap around your marketing. Many people want to sell online but have no idea what products to sell. In my experience selling something for profit alone with no personal passion can be a mistake and I have found that building an email list for marketing and growing your brand is a cheap effective way to get started quickly.

5 Products you can sell and make money using “email marketing”.

  1. Digital products and virtual services. Digital products are easy to duplicate, store, and ship digitally via email or file sharing service.
  2. Affiliate marketing programs. Many companies online look for enthusiastic individuals to resell their products or services. Scrolling to the footer of a business’s website will typically link to any affiliate program if offered. You can also search for specific affiliate programs that suit your needs.
  3. Trendy products that are in demand. Great way to let product buzz and word of mouth help your cause. The Google Trends tool will show you the current trends of your product ideas based on total search volumes. This can be a great way to determine what’s currently popular.
  4. Start your own business. Get creative and bring your ideas online with a website or product page selling your creations, products or services. Accepting payments is easy these days with services like PayPal and all you need to do is promote your website using email marketing.
  5. Freelance writing services, or create a blog. Writing can be an interesting and rewarding way to make money online. You can publish and sell eBooks, blog posts can generate revenue from ads or affiliate links, sponsors, or you can write about your current products for sale.

When sending email in large volumes always be sure you choose a true high volume, web-based email marketing software that can grow with your ongoing success.

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Source by Rodney Gray

What is the Most Powerful Colon Cleanser in the Market?

What is the Most Powerful Colon Cleanser in the Market?

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If you are looking for the most powerful colon cleanser available in the market, then you might be fooled into looking for the ones which contain chemicals in them. This is because these products have chemicals which can produce a very powerful elimination of waste. However, this will not be a pleasant experience.

For this reason, it is a good idea to choose those which contain natural ingredients instead. It is possible to be both natural and effective.

Don’t confuse powerful with ‘fast elimination’ or ‘severe cramping’. Truthfully, a very effective cleanser will work consistently over time to do a deep, deep cleanse. This process can take up to 1 month to happen properly, but at the end of the month, you have a completely refreshed digestive system which functions more effectively and keeps your body running at its peak.

Cleansers will flush out all of the harmful toxins and waste material which have built up inside your colon. This is because if you leave your colon unattended, you will have a lot of health problems which are all caused by the dirt in your colon. With this in mind, you will need the most powerful colon cleanser to do the job for you.

If you have never had a cleanse done before, you have to know what you should expect. Since cleansing gets rid of the harmful toxins and waste material, it is a must that you should stay indoors while you are having the cleanse. This is because a cleanse will have you going to the comfort room several times. You will have a regular bowel movement experience because of colon cleansing.

Aside from that, colon cleansing can also lead to weight loss. If you are looking for the most powerful colon cleanser, you might be able to lose several pounds in the process. Cleansing can also make your skin more clear and smooth.

All this is possible with a natural 30-day cleansing product. In fact, it’s not only possible, it’s common and it will result in a healthier body with none of the potential side effects of a chemical cleansing product. Find out more about the most powerful colon cleanser today by visiting my website.

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Source by Sophie M. Allan

Which Koi Food Brand Is The Best Choice For Your Fish?

Which Koi Food Brand Is The Best Choice For Your Fish?

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A comparative study with candid insights regarding the differences between some of the most popular Koi food brands commercially available to Koi keepers within the USA.

One of the questions we receive most often from Koi keepers is “which Koi food is the best?” At first glance, the answer to this question is a very simple one. It depends. But the real answer to this question involves asking a very different question of the pond owner. What are your goals? There are as many different types of people involved in the Koi keeping hobby as there are varieties and quality levels when it comes to Koi fish themselves.

Many pond owners simply want to come home from a hard day’s work to watch a few inexpensive “pretty fish” swimming in their humble backyard water gardens, perhaps with a few water lilies or floating plants. While some hobbyists dedicate a great deal of their time and money to raising championship quality nishikigoi, the Japanese term for Koi fish, to compete in Koi shows throughout the USA and abroad, showing Koi is not for everyone. And determining which Koi food is the right choice for you and your Koi requires you to first decide what type of hobbyist you hope to become.

Many water gardeners decide to add a few inexpensive fish to their ponds after seeing them on sale at Wal-Mart or at their local pet shop. There is nothing inherently wrong with purchasing Koi fish from these sources, but Koi originating from these outlets are largely viewed as “culls” by true Koi aficionados. The term “cull” refers to lower quality Koi fish which are generally disposed of or sold cheaply by Koi breeders to provide maximum tank space for Koi of higher quality which typically command significantly higher prices from collectors once grown on for a year or two.

Just as a human being could technically survive by eating nothing but cheeseburgers and fast food, a Koi fish can also technically survive by eating a lower quality Koi fish food. In fact, Koi are scavengers in the wild and can survive just fine by eating algae and other waste found naturally in your pond or water garden. But there is a difference between surviving and flourishing, and when it comes to Koi fish, the quality of food being used is major factor to overall fish health, maximum growth, and color conformation.

There are well over 100 commercially available brands of Koi food available in the USA alone, with hundreds more available abroad. With so many choices available, many Koi keepers begin to question themselves whether there is actually a difference when it comes to commercial food types on the market. Specifically, Koi keepers may wonder whether a “premium” brand is really worth the premium price, or whether a more economical food offering may provide similar results at a far lower price point.

There is most definitely a difference when it comes to quality. Top Koi breeders will only feed their top fish a quality food they believe will yield the best results. During our research and ongoing communications with literally dozens of top minds in the Koi community, we have found only one established Koi importer who genuinely believes all fish food brands are the same. To put it mildly, this un-named Koi dealer is largely viewed as “ill-informed” by mostly everyone in the pond and water garden industry.

Anyone who has ever owned a dog knows there is a difference between the premium dog food sold at their specialty pet store and the cheap supermarket brand. Marketing aside, there is a quality difference between dog foods. And this same reality applies to Koi foods as well. So again, it comes down to the same question previously asked: What are your goals as a Koi keeper? Knowing your goals is the key to choosing the best Koi food for your specific situation.

With so many Koi food brands on the market today, to help make sense of the seemingly endless sea of choices we generally classify Koi foods into one of three categories. The top tier of Koi foods we classify as premium quality fish foods. These top-tiered foods include only the best quality ingredients and are commonly used by hobbyists who raise show quality Koi fish. The second tier includes Koi foods we would consider to be quality Koi foods. These Koi food offerings are definitely a notch below premium foods in terms of ingredients used, but also tend to be offered at more economical price.

The third and final tier is what we commonly refer to as Koi staple foods. Don’t let the fact these we classify these foods at the bottom fool you. Staple Koi foods are not of inherently lower quality than some fish foods …

How to Write a Damage Controlling Press Release

How to Write a Damage Controlling Press Release

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The public relations department is wholly responsible for establishing and maintaining the company’s reputation and ensuring that they swiftly and tactfully deal with crisis situations if or when they occur.

Whether the crisis is completely unexpected and happens out of the blue, or whether it’s a crisis that the company knew about beforehand but were hoping would never come to light, it’s about what the company’s PR department writes in its damage control press release which will ultimately decide the fate of the company’s future with its customers.

The press release is the main tool in any PR department’s damage control management kit that can be used for the sole purpose of completely turning a company’s hellish scenario on its head. This is all well and good for big companies that have the money to afford a good PR department, but what about smaller companies? Some may employ the help of a PR company on a consultation basis, but if that is also an unaffordable option then they may have to write one themselves.

So, how do companies write an effective damage control press release? Here are some guidelines on what it should include.

1 – State the facts and speak the truth

The press release needs to provide the public and press with the key facts about the crisis, in response to what may already exist in the press or is about to be released. Denials and fabrications of the truth should be avoided at all costs as this could have serious implications. Be careful if there is the possibility of a potential lawsuit as a result of the crisis, or even just because this could irrevocably damage the company’s reputation if the truth comes to light at a later date.

2 – Take responsibility

Whatever the situation, if the company is responsible for what happened then it is essential that they take responsibility for their actions. Even if the crisis is a result of the actions of one individual employee, the company should still shoulder the responsibility so that the public does not think that the company is simply scapegoating or shrugging off the problem in order to keep the brand image squeaky clean.

Not shouldering the responsibility is more likely going to weaken the public’s opinion of the company further.

3 – Express concern and take action

The type of language used is of extreme importance. The company needs to express empathy and concern at just the right level so that their customers, the public, and the press understand that the company is apologetic and concerned about their customers rather than just about the negative impact the crisis is having on their business.

The company needs to explain what appropriate action they are taking in order to bring the crisis to a satisfactory conclusion. If the crisis is one that has resulted in health and safety concerns or has an environmental impact, then the public needs to be reassured of their immediate and future safety. Depending on the nature of the crisis, the company should also mention any compensatory measures that they are taking or have in place.

At the end of the damage controlling press release, the company should include positive details about their business in order to remind their loyal customers why they choose to do business with them. The company should also include details about what they have learned from this bad experience and the future proofing steps they are taking or have already put in place to ensure a crisis of that nature never happens again.

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Source by Gerard Mohamed

Tricks Of The Trade – 14 Newspaper Advertising Tips From America’s Busiest Ad Copywriter!

Tricks Of The Trade – 14 Newspaper Advertising Tips From America’s Busiest Ad Copywriter!

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I get a ton of emails asking me about newspaper advertising. First and foremost, most people ask me if the growth and popularity of the Internet and other forms of “new” media have made newspapers obsolete as an effective advertising medium. To that I say, no way! Newspapers are alive and well, and as powerful as ever! If they weren’t, advertisers (of all shapes and sizes) wouldn’t continue to throw billions of dollars at them! Newspapers – local and national – will always be there. They’re not going anywhere, no matter how big the Internet gets or how many forms of “new media” are introduced. They’ve stood the test of time – through radio, TV and the Internet — and they’ll always be a great place to advertise, provided your target market is within the newspaper’s demographic. Next, people are always asking me for advice on newspaper advertising. They want to know the best newspapers to advertise in, the best times to advertise, the best size ads to use, what colors work best, what to say, how to say it, etc. For those people, I’ve put together this list of my 14 best newspaper advertising “secrets.” Of course, these aren’t really “secrets” – this advice has been around for years. Unlike the Internet and other forms of “new media” which seem to change every day (creating a constant need for bigger and better marketing strategies), newspaper advertising hasn’t changed much in the past 25 years, meaning the tips and techniques that follow have proven themselves to work over and over again. Time-tested and proven – the best kind of advice!

Tip #1: Consistency is key in newspaper advertising. Whether you’re interested in community, local or national newspaper advertising, always think in terms of using it consistently no less than once a week.

Tip #2: Certain days work better than others for certain types of advertising. Generally, the best day to run a newspaper ad is Sunday. That’s when most people spend the most time reading the paper. Let’s take a look at the other days:

  • Monday is good if your audience is primarily men all weekend sports are usually summarized on Monday.
  • Tuesday and Sunday are great days for classified ads, especially financial or business related classified ads.
  • Wednesday and Thursday are good days if those are the food or health days in your paper, and yours is a food or health related offering.
  • Friday is a good day if your business picks up on the weekends restaurants, bars, nightclubs, some retailers, concert venues, farmer’s markets.
  • Saturday is good because fewer advertisers use the Saturday edition, thinking it’s a bad day for readership. This means less competition for your prospects attention and money

Tip #3: Positioning your ad. To gain maximum exposure, request that your ad run in the main news section of the paper, as far forward as possible. Traditionally, you were told to always ask for a right-hand page, but recent studies have shown it doesn’t really make a difference. Half the people read the newspaper front to back, the other half, back to front. You should, however, request that your ad be positioned above the fold.

Tip #4: Dominating a page, without paying for it. To dominate a page in the newspaper, which is usually 8 columns wide by twenty-two inches high, design an ad that is five columns wide and twelve or more inches high. This is proven to have the same affect as a full-page ad, at a much lower cost.

Tip #5: Use color. You should also inquire about adding one color. The use of just one color, any color, can dramatically increase your “net exposure” (that’s what I call the number of people who actually read your ad) and nearly double your response rate.

Tip #6: Whatever you do, don t let the newspaper people design your ad for you. Have your ad professionally designed, otherwise it will look like every other ad in the paper. (I once worked in a newspaper ad department, believe me, I know!) Be sure the designer has experience in newspaper ads, too. You want your ad to reproduce properly, which means it may need a certain line-screen. Also, stay away from reverse-type white type against a black background. Keep your type clear; your headline bold.

Tip #7: Make your ad newsworthy. People read newspapers to get the news, so try to make your ad as newsworthy as possible. If your ad is small, give it a distinctive border so it creates a visual identity for your ads.

Tip #8: You’re paying for that space – use it! Be sure to give your prospects enough information to buy what you’re selling. And don’t fall into the trap of revering white space because it looks good. …

History of Print Advertising

History of Print Advertising

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Advertisements can be found in several forms and in several places. One of such form is print advertising. Ads in this encompass those which are in print on some kind of paper that is handled by potential audience. Offers that are sent via mail or posted in newsletters are well explained in history of print advertising. Let us go through this article to know more about the history of print advertising.

Print media indeed is the oldest kind of advertising which has a long-long history. This advertising strategy started way back in 1468 during the days of William Caxton when he promoted a book that had his 1st printed advertisement.

After which in 1704, Joseph Campbell moved on to include ads in Boston Newsletter. This in fact was a great idea since people started becoming well informed regarding certain people and products. In 1833 period, Benjamin Day got his ‘New York Sun’ book printed which was a combination of advertising vehicle and news. After this, the ‘Edward Book of Ladies Home Journal’ created a magazine ad code during 1910. Since this period, print advertising started evolving with more attention seeking designs and glamour’s. Advertising considered in general has had several significant events in the past but the history of print advertising has surpassed it.

Print ads stand effective only if people view them. When people look through several publications, they get a tendency to receive new details and become more observant about the things that interest them.

This form of advertising aims to attract more and more people towards their services and products, as and when they read or scan publications. Such ads are commonly seen in magazines, newsletters and newspapers. This type of advertising requires lots of planning which is done often by a group of individuals.

Some people get employed in this field to create best ideologies to drag the attention for inspiring more and more people to shell out money.

When we glance through the history of print media advertising, we get these concepts:

A group of individuals are required for creating ideas which further develops into a concept.

Several others are involved in placing these concepts appropriately, since this factor earns them more cash.

Finally, print media advertising becomes a major part of earning revenue for any publication. Mailers are also a kind of print-advertising which range from postcards to note sized white-paper. So, now you would have understood the history of print advertising.

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Source by Owais Siddiqui Jr

Digital Marketing Lessons For The Speedy Growth Of Start Ups

Digital Marketing Lessons For The Speedy Growth Of Start Ups

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Having good marketing and product skills is necessary for the ceaseless growth of a startup. Undoubtedly, going to the fail, middle, and success are three usual phrases of life where you get pretty important lessons on how things work to avoid the failures. Keep an eye to such lessons and apply them to get the integrated result so you will be sharing your personal story with the whole world. Bad marketing has the worst impact on your customers so it is necessary to have two most significant traits i.e. good products or intelligent services and great marketing skills.

Digital Marketing Skills To Give Great Boost To Your Start up:-

  • Think Twice Before Choosing The Marketing Medium: There are different types of mediums through which you can make your brand bigger. The growing examples of such mediums fascinate the most people and let them post ads for their business for the benefits. Choosing a platform wisely is actually important as it lets you determine whether the engaging opportunities will going to help you in the future or not.
  • Choose Target Audience: To optimize your leads, choosing a platform that serves you with the target audience is much more important than just choosing the platform that has a number of visitors. Serving the ads after the basic filtering is waste as simply liking the ad posts or seeing them is not the actual agenda of posting the ads. Instead, choose a platform that leads your way to the target audience so you get better business and not just likes.
  • Content Quality Matters: The images and the content matter of an ad is the prime thing that entertains the visitor and fascinate the person to check into the leads. Instead of stuffing the site with the rubbish and using the keywords dramatically, try to draft some engaging and call to action phrases as to make your content appealing. Furthermore, use keywords that go with the organic way so they will not feel like stuffed forcefully.
  • Discover All About The Customer’s Need: Understanding the customer’s need to optimize your sales and boost up your company’s identity is essential so that you can adapt with the changes into your products accordingly. Serving as per the user’s end has a paramount significance to get the better results.
  • User Experience And Feedback: User experience is all about the interface of the website and the responsiveness of the pages. The feedback about the products and services the customers have used also boost up the confidence level. Sharing the valuable feedback in the section helps to maintain the stability in the relations and also engage some more customers.

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Source by Gunjan Singh

Some Observations of Successful Coffee Shops

Some Observations of Successful Coffee Shops

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When you are planning to set up your own coffee shop or a café, do have a look at the feng shui of the other coffer shops in your area.

It has been your ambition to own a coffee shop. You know that the earnings from this business can be good but there is stiff competition from the established players. How have the successful brands done it?

You could do the basic research

  • Look at the existing coffee shops or café or bars.
  • What type of coffee do they use.
  • What other products do they serve – cooked or freshly prepared?
  • What is their unique proposition?
  • How the business is operated – staffing levels.
  • The marketing and publicity.
  • The physical areas where the other outlets do good business.

Have you looked at the finer details of the locations (feng shui) of the most successful brand of coffee shops? Like Starbucks?

Many of their stores are located near cross roads or inter-sections. These coffee shops do not have doors flushed with the front wall. They are at all sorts of different angles. In fact, they have highlighted this in their publicity.

Also, look at where the cash till is placed relative to the main door. Also look at how the quiet areas for the customers are and also the areas where the busy areas area.

There is a reason why they are in that position. This is about internal design and you could call this feng shui. There must be a reason why the Starbucks coffee shops do so well.

Secondly, if you look at the intersections or cross roads in any city, you will find that there are more successful coffee shop (including café or bars) than the straight road with no junctions.

(c) Copyright – Dr Michael Oon. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

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Source by Dr Michael Oon

The Mobile Game Trend

The Mobile Game Trend

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Recently, mobile gaming has been gaining a rather large share in terms of revenue. Gaming consoles/platforms and online gaming giants have dominated the game industry for the last decades, but with the enormous mobile gaming insurgents, change is definitely coming and change is welcome especially for avid gamers and enthusiasts.

Mobile games revenue forecast is predicted to increase up to $45 billion by 2018. Asia has been the leader in the industry since 2013, and is predicted to dominate the industry by up to 50% total revenue. Industry Analyst Vincent van Deelen stated, “This is simply not the case. We are also emphasizing that the recent results of individual high profile companies such as Rovio, King, DeNA and GREE are not necessarily indicative of the state of the mobile market as a whole. It is not in our interest to inflate market figures, but the hard facts have forced us to adjust our estimates upward. We have maintained our year-on-year growth rates toward 2017, ultimately leading to a $40Bn+ market share.”

In this regard, mobile game players have successfully gained large share in the market like most gaming console and online gaming companies. Indeed, this is good news for game development companies and their shareholders to put more focus and emphasis on this growing trend. Android games are also expected to be predictably higher in the coming years. Though, it is still a proven fact that iOS rakes in more revenue than Google Play despite the latter having massive download for freemium model type of games. But in a global perspective, Chinese app stores and android game downloads and revenue far exceeded iOS last 2014. North America, Europe and other Asian countries, such as Japan and South Korea have also ventured in the global trend. Reports show that mobile games now account for nearly 40% of the country’s total digital games revenue. With increased competition, smaller companies are also getting creative with the introduction of e-sports, multi-screen gaming and HTML5 mobile gaming, and the final trend is the rising popularity of downloading Android games for TV-based gaming. The top 7 companies  in the mobile gaming industry compete for the release of quality games to dominate further and not to get left behind in the scene. These are some of the most downloaded game apps:

1. aa

2. Agar.io

3. Angry Birds

4. Angry Birds Rio

5. Angry Birds Seasons

6. Angry Birds Space

7. Angry Birds Star Wars

8. Angry Birds Star Wars 2

9. Angry Birds Go!

10. Angry Birds 2

11. Ant Smasher: Best Free Game

12. Archery Master 3D

13. Asphalt 8: Airborne

14. Bad Piggies

15. Bad Piggies HD

16. Banana Kong

17. Basketball Stars

18. Blossom Blast Saga

19. Boom Beach

20. Brave Frontier

21. Bubble Witch Saga

22. Bubble Witch 2 Saga

23. Candy Crush Saga

24. Candy Crush Soda Saga

25. Cars: Fast as Lightning

26. Castle Clash: Age of Legends

27. Clash of Clans

28. Clash of Kings

29. Clash Royale

30. Color Switch

31. Criminal Case

32. Crossy Road

33. CSR Racing

34. Deer Hunter

35. Despicable Me

36. Diamond Dash

37. Diamond Digger Saga

38. Don’t Tap The White Tile

39. Dragon City

40. Drag Racing Classic

41. Dream League

42. Dumb Ways to Die

43. Dumb Ways to Die 2: The Games

44. Extreme Car Driving Simulator

45. Fast Racing 3D

46. Frozen Freefall

47. Geometry Dash

48. Geometry Dash Lite

49. Farm Heroes Saga

50. FIFA 15 Ultimate

51. Flow Free

52. Fruit Ninja Free

53. Glow Hockey

54. Hay Day

55. Hearthstone Heroes of Warcraft

56. Hill Climb Racing

57. Hungry Shark

58. Jetpack Joyride

59. Jewels Saga

60. Magic Rush: Heroes

61. Minecraft: Pocket Edition

62. MORTAL KOMBAT X

63. My Talking Angela

64. My Talking Tom

65. Pou

66. 8 Ball Pool

67. Pet Rescue Saga

68. Piano Tiles 2 (Don’t Tap…2)

69. Plants vs. Zombies

70. Plants vs. Zombies 2

71. Real Racing 3

72. Score! Hero

73. Shadow Fight 2

74. SimCity BuildIt

75. Skater Boy

76. Slither.io

77. Smash Hit

78. Smurfs’ Village

79. Solitaire

80. Sonic Dash

81. Spider-man Unlimited

82. Stack

83. Star Girl

84. Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes

85. Subway Surfers

86. Summoners War

87. Talking Tom Bubble Shooter

88. Temple Run

89. Temple Run 2

90. Texas Holdem Poker Deluxe

91. The Simpsons: Tapped Out

92. Throne Rush

93. Traffic Racer

94. Traffic Rider

95. Trivia Crack

96. Vector

97. Zombie Tsunami

98. Z War

99. 2048

100. 2048 Number

This is a clear indicator that mobile gaming market share is expected to grow in the coming years.

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Source by Jules Elgincolin

Choose Book Titles Based on Metaphors to Sell More Books and Find More Readers

Choose Book Titles Based on Metaphors to Sell More Books and Find More Readers

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Book titles that find more readers and sell more books are often based on metaphors. Adding metaphors to your book titles helps the title immediately communicate the essence of your book.

Because of the power of metaphor-based titles, they often form the basis of publishing empires. In these cases, the original title becomes the basis of an entire series of books, as we’ll see below. These can grow to become world-wide brands, catapulting the authors to success with dozens–even hundreds–of different titles based on the same metaphor.

Advantages of Metaphors

  • Immediate recognition. A metaphor communicates at a glance. A well-chosen metaphor needs no explanation. It’s message immediately hits home.
  • Storytelling power. Metaphors tap into the power of stories to engage readers on an emotional, as opposed to a “factual” basis. They engage your readers’ hearts as well as their brains. They strike chords within your readers.
  • Multiple levels. A single metaphor can communicate numerous attributes and emotions. When your title includes an appropriate metaphor, your title taps into numerous nuances and details associated with the metaphor.
  • Comfort and familiarity. Titles with metaphors immediately establish a comfort and familiarity. They’re also easier to remember and–hence–easier to recommend to co-workers and friends.

Types of metaphor titles

There are as many different types of metaphors as there are emotions and different ways to describe multiple aspects of a topic. Here are a few of the different types of metaphors that have become the basis of successful book titles:

  • Comfort. At some points in our lives, we all need to be comforted. We may have lost our jobs, our spouses, our friends, or our pets. We need to connect with others who may have experienced the same loss, or are currently experiencing the same loss. Sometimes our need for comfort can be very narrowly defined, such as “wives with husbands overseas in the military,”
  • Philosophy, attitude, and resources. Metaphor-based titles can also instantly paint a picture of the challenges and resources of our intended readers. At a glance, an appropriate metaphor can target selected types of readers in a way that immediately resonates with them.
  • Complexity. A metaphor-based title can identify a book’s intended market as well as describe both the approach, and the the level of information contained in the book. Without using “obvious” words like “beginner” or “newcomer,” a metaphor can communicate that the book is intended for entry-level readers.
  • Style. Finally, the particular metaphor chosen can not target the intended reader, but can communicate that the author speaks the reader’s language, and really understands where the reader is coming from.

A series based on a comfort metaphor

One of the most successful book series in the world is Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen’s Chicken Soup series. The first title in the series, Chicken Soup for the Soul, was published on June 28, 1993.

The authors already had the materials in hand–101 story submissions, but they lacked a title. They each agreed to meditate on the topic for one hour. During one of his meditation sessions, Jack Canfield remembered his grandmother telling him that “chicken soup can cure anything!” Since the original title was designed to inspire the soul, not the body, the obvious title was Chicken Soup for the Soul.

By December, the book was a strong seller. By September of 1994, Chicken Soup for the Soul was on every bestseller list in the United States and Canada.

Today, there are over 200 titles in the series, and over 112 million copies have been sold. The title has been translated into more than 40 languages.

More important, according to Harris Polls, 88.7 percent of the public not only recognizes the Chicken Soup for the Soul brand, but knows what it is.

It’s impossible to conceive of success on this order if the original Chicken Soup for the Soul title had been replaced with “conventional” title like:

  • How to Cheer Yourself Up
  • 101 Inspirational Stories
  • How Others Have Overcome Obstacles

The power of the Chicken Soup brand is based on the near universal recognition, and accompanying emotional response, to feeling sick and needing to be cared for by someone who loves you.

Attitude, Resources, and Philosophy

Jay Conrad Levinson’s Guerrilla Marketing series is the world’s best-selling marketing book series. There are over 40 million Guerrilla Marketing books in print around the world. The series has created a market for Jay’s speaking and consulting on every continent; as this is being written, Jay Conrad Levinson is speaking in Poland, Latvia, and Croatia.

The Guerrilla Marketing brand’s strength is based on the immediate recognition the title provides. Guerrilla Marketing resonates with business owners who lack the unlimited budgets and resources of major corporations. Guerrilla Marketers succeed by making the most of whatever resources they have.

“Guerrilla” communicates …

Marketing Through Service – How to Get Customer Referrals and Sales Leads in Any Business

Marketing Through Service – How to Get Customer Referrals and Sales Leads in Any Business

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“Without customers you have no business, you have absolutely nothing”. The best way to get customers is from referrals and sales leads. A sales lead or prospect is a business opportunity to gain a customer and make a sale. The best sales leads are from referrals. The best referrals in the world are word of mouth recommendations from friends and associates. Other referrals come in the form of personal endorsements from well known people. These well known recognizable people are often in the movie and sports industries.

“Example isn’t another way to teach, it’s the only way to teach”… Albert Einstein.

Let’s look at the customer loyalty programs that can produce word of mouth referrals. There are many successful programs presently being used. Here are some examples.

Customer appreciation programs:

• Some coffee shops offer a free cup of coffee after a certain number of cups have been purchased. The customer is issued a card that is stamped every time a coffee is purchased. This is an easy way for the customer to keep track of purchases, and is an incentive for them to keep coming back. The customer is very likely to tell their friends. With regular customers come other perks, such as a free donut or other discounted food item.

• Most restaurants have daily specials on their food and beverage menus, but some give out coupons that offer a discount on their next meal. Often restaurants will do some direct advertising in the form of flyers with discount coupons to attract new customers. It is the quality of the food and service that will keep their customers coming back and referring them to others.

• Some large grocery stores offer a customer appreciation day. On a certain day each month, the customer will receive a 10% off all purchases (usually with a minimum purchase of $35.00). Other shops have senior day discounts, often one day per week (usually the slowest day, Tuesday) and the discount is 5% off everything with no minimum purchase.

• Other stores often have scratch cards where the customer scratches off an immediate discount ranging anywhere fro 5 – 75% off all purchases. While some will offer, buy one item and get the next one at 25% off.

• Most of the major gas stations offer loyalty programs offering points that can be redeemed for free gas or other items the station sells.

• Financial and retail stores usually offer points that can be redeemed for just about anything from travelers cheques, air travel, hotel accommodation and or a catalog of items.

• Service industries often outsource to marketing companies to acquire leads. Have you ever been phoned by a carpet cleaning company offering you a special deal?

It seems today, that most customers collect points, coupons, and other incentives, as a normal or expected way of doing business. Marketing through service is always the best way to get referrals and sales leads.

The hospitality industry is huge and extremely competitive and will come up with many innovative and creative ways of getting customers from sales leads, advertising and referrals. Most companies have affiliate programs and can put together vacation packages that include everything. Including transportation to and from residence to departure terminal (train, bus, ship or airport) carrier, destination hotel (all inclusive, food, drinks, and entertainment) all taxes, gratuities, transfers for one payment on a credit card. Each component of the package is important to the overall success, as everyone who goes on vacation will tell their friends all about it. For example, if the local taxi rides to or from your residence was enjoyable, you would more than likely use that service again and also recommend them to others. The same is true for all of the other components.

Every facet of the vacation/tourism business offers incentives to their customers. However it is the service they receive from the vendor that will determine whether your company gets any referrals or bad press.

Other business, besides advertising for customers, can purchase sales leads from marketing companies. Marketing companies often use telemarketing centers and direct mail and door to door campaigns to acquire these sales leads. Companies that outsource this function to professionals often get the best results.

As you can see, there are many programs being used to attract customers, keep them coming back, spending more and “Referring” your business to others. Some programs that worked well in the past, but are now forgotten, should be revived. At the end of the day if you want referrals, make sure your customers are completely satisfied. “Offer them great service, and make what you want to sell easy for them to buy”.

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Source by Peter E Smith

Online Marketing Surveys – Measuring the 4 P’s

Online Marketing Surveys – Measuring the 4 P’s

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Online surveys are giving marketing professionals dynamic tools to help measure, analyze, and grow their business. The latest Internet survey software provides valuable insights into how customers make decisions. It helps businesses make smarter choices about the four “P’s” that determine success in the marketplace: product, price, placement, and promotion.

New Product Surveys: Design, Test, Design

Savvy business owners know that marketing should begin long before their products hit the stores. Marketing should begin with the product itself, and with an in-depth understanding customer’s needs and preferences.

Powerful new questionnaire software gives businesses a revealing glimpse into the minds of potential customers. Market research surveys can help a business rethink product design, or maybe just fine tune it a bit. In simple terms, these surveys can help a business give people what they want.

New product surveys try to get at the perceived needs of customers. They ask questions like:

  • How much cargo space do you need in your truck?
  • How many watts does your backup power supply need to generate?
  • How often do your drive on icy roads?

Questions like these can help a business decide if its product line meets the needs of potential customers, or if there are gaps in the line that need to be filled. Questionnaire software allows a business to sort responses by age, gender, location, income and many other variables. This enables a business to target products to the needs of specific market segments.

New product surveys also try to determine the benefits that are most important to customers. Take vitamins as an example. Are customers mainly interested in vitamins that will help them feel better or boost their memory or improve their heart health? Questionnaire software uses sophisticated ranking questions to help isolate the benefits that people care about most.

New product surveys also help a business learn what features are important to customers. If customers show little interest in a particular feature, a business may decide to offer it as an option rather than a standard part of its products. On the other hand, if a feature shows up on a survey as being very popular, a business might decide to include it in all of its products, and emphasize it in its marketing campaign.

Conjoint Analysis: Examine the trade-offs that customers make when purchasing a product

Conjoint analysis serves many purposes in market research, but it is especially useful in making decisions about price. Here’s how it works. Suppose a traveler is thinking about booking a hotel room. Two hotels next to each other offer rooms at the same price, but one hotel has an indoor pool and the other does not. If the traveler enjoys swimming, he will probably pick the hotel with the pool, since there is no difference in price.

Our traveler does a little more research and finds that the hotel that does not have a pool offers room service, which sounds wonderfully self-indulgent. Now our traveler has to make a decision. What does he value more, a pool or room service? Suppose our traveler then learns that the hotel with the pool is offering a ten percent discount. Now things are really getting complicated.

Conjoint analysis enables a marketer to examine the trade-offs that customers make in buying a product. It allows a marketer to see which features of a product are most valuable to customers and how much extra they are willing to pay for a particular feature or combination of features. The purpose of conjoint analysis is to determine what combination of variables is most influential in a customer’s decision to buy.

Conjoint analysis also helps a marketer set an optimal price for a product. It allows the marketer to see the point at which price outweighs benefits in the consumer’s mind. Although this type of analysis sounds complicated, internet survey software makes it simple. The most sophisticated systems enable marketers to create online surveys using an intuitive wizard interface. They present the results of the analysis in a variety of formats that help marketing professionals make informed decisions.

Placement and the Purchase Process

Market research surveys can also provide valuable information about how people prefer to shop. Do they typically buy certain types of products online, or do they prefer to visit a store? If they like to shop in person, do they prefer no-frills discount stores or stores that offer advice and greater customer service? Do they buy from catalogs? If they do, do they mail in their orders or use the catalog to shop online?

The purpose of all these questions is to discover how people feel about the purchasing experience. Sometimes two companies might offer virtually identical products, but one company is much more successful because it provides customers the kind of purchasing experience they find comfortable. For …

Email Etiquette – Make Your Subject Line Do Its Job

Email Etiquette – Make Your Subject Line Do Its Job

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If you work in an office you no doubt use email every day as a primary means of communication. Too often, though, people are frustrated because they do not get replies to their emails. Little do they know their messages are going in the junk file unread!

The deciding factor as to whether your email is opened or deleted is often the subject line. So it's in your own interests to write a subject line that entices the reader to open and read your message.

So what makes an enticing subject line? Two things:

1. It leaves no doubt as to the subject of the email.
2. Readers understand what's in it for them.

A subject line like "Budget figures" is too vague and not at all enticing to the reader. What about the budget figures? Are you sending them for my information? Are you asking me for my figures? Do you want input of any kind from me? Must I do this now?

All these questions lead to confusion in the reader's mind, and a confused mind tends to do nothing.

Here's an alternative subject line to consider: "Your budget figures required for President's report by Friday morning, Maria". Does not change the picture right away? It does, because it meets both criteria. It expresses exactly what the message is about, and why Maria needs to pay attention.

Suppose I send you an email message with the subject line, "Monthly Sales Meeting." The meeting is always held on the last Wednesday of the month, and today is only the second Tuesday. I'm busy, so I'll probably decide to leave this message for now and read it later – and of course that can mean not at all!

But suppose I say instead, "Change of time and date for this month's sales meeting." That sends quite a different message? After all, it's in my interest to show up at the right time for the meeting and I'll want to change the note in my schedule, so I'm going to open the message right away.

It's a good practice to put in your subject line at the end, after you're satisfied with your message. Your important messages will be read and answered, instead of consigned to the trash.

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Source by Helen Wilkie

How to Get Rich Online – Start an Online Flea Market Easily

How to Get Rich Online – Start an Online Flea Market Easily

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With so many opportunities on getting rich on the internet, it is easy to lose sight of the ones that have proven to be effective. Those are the ones that have a community support group that provides ongoing help to the market they serve. What I am talking about is a flea market on the internet that anyone can set up. If you ever had a garage sale or know anyone who has, why not partner with them to launch one your own. It is easier now than before.

Community Support For Online Flea Market Vendors Is The Key To Success

When was the last time you got involved with an online business opportunity only to find out that there is no support for their members? This is a big problem for a lot of online business owners especially the newbies with practically no internet marketing experience at all when it comes to learning how to get rich online. Setting up the business online by way of a website is only part of the equation. Your customers need to know that you exist. You need traffic to your flea market website. Without it, you are fishing without bait.

The great thing about launching a flea market online is that there are literally tons of vendors from many different niche markets that have gotten together to create a social networking community with its intended purpose to serve their members.

Let’s say you are in the candle business. The flea market community will actually help you get your business in their listings for more exposure. They even provide all the marketing tools that you can use to leverage the power of the internet to get traffic to your website.

What About Marketing Your Business On eBay And Craigslist?

There is nothing wrong with that approach. Let me remind you that competition is really fierce due to the fact that eBay and Craigslist encompasses an increasingly wide range of market niches in so many different categories that is difficult to keep up with. For example, jobs, real estate, businesses, housing, services, and etc. None of these pertain to selling flea market items.

Despite the fact that Craigslist and eBay gets over 4 billion page views a month, you are better off finding a tighter niche market with less competing traffic to serve your market more effectively and efficiently. By having your store listed in a community website that is focused on selling the typical stuff found in local flea markets, you have a better chance of being found because shoppers go there for one purpose only: to buy something from you that they want.

Building Long Lasting Relationships Has Always Been The Proven Formula For Online Flea Market Success

If you have gone to one in your local area, how often do you visit the same booth of the person who sold you some great stuff. That is the beauty of doing business at a flea market. Not exactly a way to get rich compared to online.

Have you ever been to festivals in your area? Street vendors make tons of money selling stuff ranging from used merchandise, products, and food. People who frequent these festivals are in the buying frame of mind. And many vendors have branded themselves successfully by being there every single year for that particular event, capitalizing on the repeat business from former customers.

Now just imagine how powerful this concept alone can be if it is applied to the online world? The strong sense of community is established very easily through forum discussions on a wide range of topics pertaining to stuff sold in flea markets. Vendors participating in these discussions always get a sizable amount of traffic to their website resulting in massive sales of products.

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Source by Billy Ying Ching

Which Brand Of Popcorn Pops Most?

Which Brand Of Popcorn Pops Most?

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Popcorn is a favorite treat and when Americans eat popcorn they are serious about it. You want to find the best popcorn, right? You want popcorn that will pop up the most so you get the most popcorn to enjoy.

While some people out there enjoy the unpopped kernels, most people want the fluffy popped popcorn. A popcorn brand that fails to pop is basically a waste of time and money.

Read on to find out how to get the most out of your next bag of popcorn by learning how to figure out the popcorn brand that pops the best.

Factors Affecting How Popcorn Pops

Popcorn has a special design that enables it to pop verses other type of corn. There are many things that affect how popcorn pops. In order to really make a good comparison of different brands of popcorn you have to understand what things may affect the popcorn.

Sometimes you will find popcorn from the same brand pops differently if it is from different brands. The fact that the moisture content of the kernel must be at 13% or around for ideal popping may have something to do with that.

Storage or age can reduce the moisture content and cause the corn not to pop. It is important that you choose your popcorn carefully for the test.

A Simple Way to compare Popcorn Brands

To start your test you will need to choose five brand of popcorn. Take 100 kernels from each bag. If you are using microwave popcorn you can simply open the bags and take out the kernels for the test.

Pop the kernels.

Count the amount of unpopped kernels for each brand.

To get the best results here are some tips:

– Get popcorn around the same age – check the dates on the box or container.

– Choose popcorn with similar storage conditions.

– Pop them the same way. Make sure everything you do is exactly the same.

– Use plain, unflavored popcorn.

Drawing your Conclusion

You should be able to see what popcorn left the most unpopped kernels and which left the least. The popcorn with the lesser amount of unpopped kernels is the one that popped the best.

You may want to do two round of popping for each brand so you can get a better comparison. You want to rule out the chance that something you did may have made one brand pop better.

This is not a scientific test because, as mentioned, there are so many things that can affect your test. You have to be as exact as carefully when popping and also carefully when choosing the popcorn.

You may want to repeat the test again and compare your results. This is especially helpful if two brand s seem to be neck and neck.

The bottom line is that you will find most brands pop rather well. Which one pops the best may not be important. After all, it is the taste that counts in the end.

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Source by Joseph Then

Branding Vs Advertising Vs Promotions Vs Marketing Vs Public Relations

Branding Vs Advertising Vs Promotions Vs Marketing Vs Public Relations

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Many people are confused as to the differences between branding, advertising, promotions, and public relations. For that matter, the actual process of “marketing’ is misunderstood just the same. To give you a basic understanding, marketing is not a one time event or activity, it is a process, a combination of things which blend together. By definition, marketing is the act of mixing product, price, place, and promotion. But first, on to…

Branding.

A great example of branding is Apple. iMac, iPod, iTouch, iPhone, iTunes. Get the point? Apple has created a massive brand strategy using the “i” element. Think of the Ritz-Carlton, LifeTime Family Fitness, Hilton Hotels, and what do you see? First class service, luxurious amenities, excellent service? Now, how about Best Western, 24-Hour Fitness, Motel 6? What kind of “Brand” is each of those? Can you see the contrast? What is your company brand? Are you sure? If you think you’re a high-end facility, do you show it? Would you see the front desk clerk at the Ritz-Carlton wearing a button promoting the frequent guest club? Would you see a front desk clerk at a Motel 6 wearing a $1000 suit? Does everything you do, say, print, write, and provide consistent with your brand message? If not, you may want to consider who your true target audience is, and work at ensuring you continue to provide services that directly relate to them.

Advertising

Advertising is the actual process of displaying your message. Advertising on the radio… Advertising on tv… The one act of making something happen. Tie your Advertising and your Branding together, you have the Marketing Process. If you are just “advertising” without any direction, any goal, any unity, then you’re just a lost puppy wandering aimlessly hoping someone will give you a good home.

Promotions

A promotion is typically a one-time event for a specific purpose or goal. Whereas marketing is ongoing, a promotion can be a one-day, one week, one-month, or even one-hour event. In retail, a “SALE” is typically a promotion. Car dealerships offering Zero percent interest is a limited time promotion. They typically have a specific start and end date, and have a very clear understanding of the R.O.I. (Return on Investment) any particular promotion should achieve to make it a success.

Public Relations

P.R., or Public Relations, typically revolves around un-paid news sources and focuses on your business as it relates to the community. If you see a positive, or hopefully positive, story on the news or an article in the newspaper, this is the type of press a Public Relations firm may help you get. They have strong relationships with the news media and often feed them stories about their clients, in hopes of some free press. You, too, can harness the power of free press and public relations, although it can be difficult at times to get noticed, which is the PR firm’s strongpoint.

Marketing

Marketing is the process that drives all the above elements. It directs the feel, image, and tone of the advertising, promotions and public relations. To each of these elements, there are experts in each of these fields. You can hire a company just to handle your branding, and another to handle your advertising, marketing, and yet another for your public relations. Of course, as a small business owner, you may not always have the budget for such companies. You can learn how to achieve the same results at http://TheMarketingWire.com and get the latest in marketing news, education and resources to help build and grow your business.

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Source by Mark Tinge

5 Steps to Online Advertising For Tow Companies

5 Steps to Online Advertising For Tow Companies

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One of the biggest challenges for any tower is to know when they have gathered enough information to make a business decision. This is the case with internet advertising too.

It is difficult to figure all this out without dropping everything else your job requires of you and feel like you have a good understanding of what the right approach is to internet advertising for a small towing company. After all it seems very confusing, there are way too many options to choose from (and more popping up every day) and you feel the pressure to do something soon before its too late. And you keep on hearing people tell you the yellow pages are dead and 80% of customers look online first for a local business, alright already!

But take a deep breath. The solution to this problem, just like all of the others we face as towers, is to slowly but deliberately work our way into the issue and get comfortable as we go. I will attempt to show you how to do this and provide help options for you along the way. So whether you choose to manage the entire process yourself or hire a company like mine so you can stay focused on running your business, you will feel better about the decision you are making.

Step 1: Create a Business Profile- Creating a profile for your company is easier than you may think. Just write a few sentences about your company history. Show potential customers that you are reliable and trustworthy. Include a complete list of services offered and thorough descriptions of your service area. This is how searchers will find you. Include photos, links, hours of operation, address and contact information.

Step 2: Claim Your Profiles- Go to local business directory sites like Google Local and post your profile. There is a huge competition going on between search engines, traditional phone directory providers and new companies to be the source for local business listings. And what they all have in common is a desire for you to post your business profile on their site. This gives them the ability to provide the best search results for their users. A list of the add pages can be found on my web site.

Step 3: Start Keyword Search Advertising- This is probably the most confusing part you will have to deal with, but it is also probably the most important and this is why. Most everything you do to promote your tow company online is information your potential customer has to find through a search engine. That is, you put the info up, they go to a search engine like Google and type in what they are looking for, then Google decides if you are a good match for their search. But with Keyword Search advertising, you target the customer directly. You can, for example, have you ad appear every time someone searches “Poughkeepsie, NY Towing.” I recommend starting with a Google AdWords account (you can also work with Yahoo Search Marketing and Bing adCenter which provide the same services for their searchers.) Start small and increase your spend as you gain confidence.

Step 4: Read and React- Perfecting your Keyword Search Advertising plan takes time. Watch each of your ads carefully for performance. Your goal is to have that ad appear before potential customers. If you observe an ad getting many impressions but generating little traffic that is a sign that either the ad copy is not effective or you are not targeting the right traffic. Test the same ad across several keywords and then several ads for the same keywords. When you see spikes in positive results work note the mix that is working and then try to expand. Test similar ads and similar keywords, keep the ones that work and deactivate the ones that don’t work.

Step 5: Develop a Social Media Campaign- The final piece of the puzzle is to start using tools like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and MySpace for you business. These efforts are free but can be time consuming. They require active participation to generate the type of excitement necessary to do what we want them to do which is increase your company Search Score. This is a number used by search engines to measure to “buzz” about your company. The more buzz they see the more important they feel it is to provide your information to searchers. Search engines figure the more frequent you update information about your company the more likely it is that you will be providing up to date, accurate and relevant info for their searchers. So they equate buzz with value.

Whether you choose to manage this process yourself or to bring in an expert it is important to get started soon. You want …

Cost Effective Advertising

Cost Effective Advertising

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When you are in business you know that cost effective advertising is crucial to the success of your product or service. If no-one recognizes that your products or services are available you won’t make any sales. Economic advertising is the key to raising sales and awareness while maintaining that harsh truth. For top cost effective advertising, you must whom you are targeting for sales and what you are selling.

A product versus something may have different types of marketing strategies. Once you have determined your marketplace you are able to really find economical advertising. Are you currently an online based product seller? Your most cost effective advertising will probably be an email campaign.

Email promotions are available through many internet companies that will send your advertisement in the market to their subscribers (not SPAM) for any very small fee. They can target any demographics which you choose enabling you to reach people your friends with will be interested. This generates a lot of visits to your site and resulting sales. Are you currently a property based supplier? If that’s the case, a printed flyer distribution might be your most economical advertising method. Many of the great for people offering cleaning and repair services.

Prospective customers might not respond immediately in your flyer, nevertheless, they help you to save the flyer when they are doing require the service. In contrast to general ads inside the paper that are often skimmed over, realizing that flyer is in their file once they need your service will generate long-term sales for the company. Cost effective advertising may be accomplished by your company through research. Whenever you take time to see who your marketplace is, you can get the most out of your advertising budget. Economic advertising is about reaching people who have an interestin your service not about reaching everyone.

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Source by Michael Harrah

5 Marketing Axioms to Increase Sales and Achieve Sustainable Business Results

5 Marketing Axioms to Increase Sales and Achieve Sustainable Business Results

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What comes first marketing or selling? This is the chicken in the egg quandary faced by small business owners, SOHO, sales professionals to even C-Level executives. However, the answer is marketing even though some may resist this simplistic response because marketing is not their strong suit or because the current organizational structure removes the sales department from marketing efforts.

So why is marketing so critical to business and sales success? These 5 Axioms may help answer that question.

Axiom #1

You can have the best product or service, incredible customer loyalty and the greatest ROI, but unless someone sees and more importantly wants to learn more about you, it truly does not matter about your products or services.

By remembering this axiom, you may be less likely to talk about your products or services, prices or even provide a proposal

Axiom #2

Products or services only sell themselves only after these 4 actions have been taken, leading to an established relationship.

  • Attract Attention
  • Incite Interest
  • Develop Desire
  • Include call to Action

People buy from people they know and trust. Until you accomplish these four actions, the likelihood that you have the beginnings of an mutually agreeable relationship has been greatly diminished.

Axiom #3

Business is at least 75% about effective marketing and 25% about actually selling.

Unfortunately, for many the opposite is true with 25% or less time being devoted to effective marketing. Then when the business becomes busy delivering its products or services there is even less time for marketing. When you think you do not need to market because business is good to great, then look to your nearest McDonald’s. Has this business with impressive branding stopped its marketing?

Axiom #4

These four elements must be present to deliver a powerful marketing message.

  1. Powerful Story
  2. Cohesive Message
  3. Emotional Exploitation
  4. Targeted Audience

Your message is the first and most crucial step within the overall sales process. A weak message delivers equally weak results. However, a strong message that fails to emotionally connect with your potential customers (a.k.a. prospects) will also deliver poor results.

Axiom #5

Time invested in improving effective marketing skills has an exponential factor to realizing the goal to increase sales.

When you hone your marketing skills, you will invest less time in selling your products or services and increase your earned sales ratio (close ratio).

When you understand and implement these 5 Marketing Axioms, you will begin to increase sales and truly enjoy the fruits of all your labors.

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Source by Leanne Hoagland-Smith

The Importance of Branding and Marketing in Hospitality

The Importance of Branding and Marketing in Hospitality

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Managers in the hospitality industry should understand marketing and branding. Hospitality marketing prepares future managers with the knowledge needed to ensure that their company, whether it is a well established hotel or a new restaurant, understands the way consumers think. This is extremely important, because the consumer drives the hospitality industry. Understanding the mind of the consumer and why they make the purchasing decisions that they do can prove to be lucrative. It’s useful to know what role marketing and branding plays in those decisions and how you can make it work for you. Many hospitality management training courses discuss marketing and branding as a way to improve the company or brand you may work for.

As some experts discuss in hospitality management training courses, brands have something known as “equity.” Brand equity is when consumers associate that brand with positive and favorable feelings. A brand’s reputation and goodwill adds value to the company. Sometimes, this added value can be worth more for the company than the actual physical assets the company is worth. This is why sometimes new products are released under well-known and well-established brand names.

It gives more comfort and reliability for the consumer to trust and try the new product. This is true for the hospitality industry, for example when new hotels are often represented under one same brand name. While learning about hospitality marketing you begin to understand why these people trust these brands, which is something known as brand loyalty.

Brand loyalty is when a consumer insists on continuously buying one particular brand of a product. They stick with that brand for a long period of time and will choose it over any other similar brands, even if the unknown brand costs less. Although being in that position is considered extremely successful in hospitality marketing, it has recently become increasingly difficult to gain loyal consumers. This is due to two causes, one being that brands within the same category have become increasingly similar. The second cause is that sales promotions and lower priced deals are being offered constantly by different brands- making it difficult for consumers to just stick with one brand because they can get a better deal. However, if the quality of a brand is consistently great and no other brand can offer the same, there is a great chance that consumers will be loyal.

This can lead to what experts and marketing professionals in hospitality marketing describe as a “master brand.” The master brand is a brand that is so dominant in consumers’ minds that they immediately connect it with an entire product category. Branding and marketing is extremely important in getting brands to this position. Even if your brand doesn’t reach this level of recognition, there are ways to be successful at marketing it for effective results. For example, good branding can be valuable when you have an easily identifiable brand, whether it is through the name or trademark.

As mentioned previously, another way to be successful at hospitality marketing is through consistent quality and service. As some hospitality management training courses explain, branding is also successful when the location is convenient. There are always better approaches, methods, and techniques to use to make your brand better and increase equity, loyalty, and recognition for the consumer and branding can be a big part of it. These are key concepts to remember and put into practice to establish a successful career in hospitality.

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Source by David Shoemaker