THE WORLD OF DIGITAL MARKETING encompasses a lot of different categories: display ads, social media marketing, email marketing, SEO, blogs, PPC… The list goes on and on. Digital marketing is an ever-evolving medium that has become an essential marketing platform for businesses in any industry.
If you looked at your sales over the last year(s) you’ll see peaks when sales are really up and valleys when sales are dismal. Many small business owners (and inexperienced advertising “experts”) will try to spend their way out of a sales valley. The problem is, you can’t. You don’t have enough money in your advertising war chest. In fact very few corporations have deep enough pockets to bring buyers who aren’t in a buying mood into a market.
Design changes everything.
Want to change your bottom line? Change your design. We all buy products and services to remind ourselves, and to show everyone in Kansas City, “THIS is who we are” “THIS is what we stand for.” Think about how many bottles of wine you’ve picked up at the corner Berbiglia store based on label design alone. Your company’s brand design has a direct influence on whether or not I even consider doing business with you. Are you an AutoStartUSA car buyer or an Aristocrat? Your design influences your customers expectations.
I’ve had my ideas shot down for every conceivable reason…
Results. Heroes. Ego.
What do your customers want? Results. Heroes. And to feel good about themselves (Ego). Your business doesn’t have to deliver all three, but you need to give them at least one or you won’t be in business for very long.
Sell from the inside, out.
It’s one of our founding principles. Get your staff and managers behind your advertising and your advertising can’t miss. If they’re not behind it, living it — if your customer service doesn’t match your ad’s promise — then it doesn’t matter how many Kansas City Ad Club awards your creative wins or how much money you throw at it – your ads are going to give your company a split personality.
Customers have never been harder to catch in Kansas City. Smartphones. Tablets. Streaming video. DVRs. Network TV. 500 cable channels. Video on demand. Your customers are watching their favorite programming on their time, in their own ways. They’re price shopping while standing in your store. They’re watching TV and surfing the web at the same time. What’s a KC small business owner to do?
You suck (at something) and that’s your leading edge for growth. Yes. You’re good enough, smart enough and darn it, people do like you, but your small business will never grow until you look deeper and admit that “you suck.” Once you know your suck-factor, you can address it. Small business owners tend to think that they can be great at a great many things. Take the ego down a notch and take a realistic look at what you do worst. Then search for the people with the specific skills in what you suck at.
To make friends.
It's really that simple (and complicated). But if we're not continually making friends with our Kansas City neighbors, then we're not going to be in business much longer.
Most small business owners loves the idea of social media, “it’s free!” Then reality hits, “this takes too much time.” And so those small biz social media accounts go fallow.
Can you invest 18 minutes a day? If so, Hootsuite put out a pretty smart social media plan for small businesses: