The Social Media School Yard

I’ve often talked to my clients about how Social Media is like a school yard.

I think there are some distinct groups represented:

  • Friends
  • Enemies
  • Sportstars
  • Cool Kids
  • Nerds

Let’s look at them…

Friends:

This is an easy one; there are many users, businesses, organisations and general peeps who are madly giving you value, ‘how to’ tips and information to help you do whatever you are trying to do….awesome!

Enemies:

Hmmm…just like the world there are people who are using the internet to take advantage of you. Be aware and always ask the extra questions to make your self more comfortable…not so great.

Sportstars:

These are the guys at the gym that are lifting weights in the mirror! Lot of eye candy but not much substance. These are the many ’10 weirdest family photos’ type sites. Spend brief amounts of time to  enjoy the view and not too much that you waste valuable working time…ok in short bursts but serious time waste otherwise!

Cool Kids:

There’s so many of them! Here’s a few of my ‘go-to’ cool kids!

The best thing about these cool kids is they are sharing their coolness with all of us!

Nerds:

There are some fab technical sites or resources out there. Here’s a few that I use:

  • Mashable – has so much other than what you might need but great for getting good early advice!
  • Adweek – quite wide offering but use to pick up some great info
  • Google alerts – perfect for getting current info on the run

Have a great day!

Kathy Smail

 

I need Sales (Part 2)

Identifying the target customer for your business can mean many things. These questions can help. Think about the customer who:

  • purchases regularly
  • purchases for a specific purpose
  • visits periodically but purchases
  • browses but may not purchase

If you have a service based business rather than a retail business just alter these questions to some of the following. Look for the customer who:

  • demonstrates loyalty by buying regularly
  • buys periodically but not regularly
  • calls for a quote but doesn’t ever follow through with the job

These questions can help to build a picture of your target customer as identifying them can start the process of building a plan for addtional sales.

Enjoy!

Kathy Smail

I need Sales (Part 1)

I regularly get clients who tell me that they “just need customers” which translates to that they “just need sales”. In essence they’re right; more customers and sales are vital for additional cash flow but a desire isn’t enough. It’s as if they believe that simply making the request is enough to get more customers streaming through the door.

Getting additional sales can be tricky especially when sales are getting tougher to secure.

Ask yourself these questions to start planning:

  • Who is an example of my target customer?
  • Is my target customer buying from me?

We’ll discuss these questions next time.

Enjoy!

Kathy Smail

It’s not who you know..you know? Part 2

Previously I’ve chatted about Valarie Khoo’s article here. She talked about utilising the existing customers or clients that you already have and building your business through them. I agree absolutely that this is vital lifeline for your business and I’d like to expand that thought for those of you who are starting a business.

Starting a business can be hard work. I have clients who have started a business and I’d like to share a strategy that helped them.

  1. Create a customer wish list – Look around you and write down everyone that you know who may be interested in your product or service
  2. Refine the List – Look through the names and place the names in groups. Use the most obvious first. For example; Family, Work, School, Social, Hobby etc
  3. Target your Groups – Target your approaches to each specific group, looking for ways to reach more than one person in a group at the same time

It can be daunting to be staring at a customer base of none so start with those you have around you…after all they have a vested interest in helping you…they might even like you!

Remember, if you need help you can also call me for a catch up.

Enjoy!

Kathy Smail

It’s who you know…you know? Part 1

One of my favoured blogs is Valarie Khoo’s Enterprise, one of The Age blogs, and I’d like to share a column she wrote a while ago. Click here for the whole article but I’d like to share some of her great points.

She says that one of a business’ best assets is their database and that the people that you already know can continue to be significantly supportive of your  business and be responsible for growing your business even further. She advises four points to work on:

  • Ensure that your database is in a format that is easy to use
  • Promote yourself to these customers/clients regularly
  • Implement a referral program
  • Any promotion which is designed to attract new customers/clients captures at least basic contact information

Enjoy!

Kathy Smail

Making $ work for you

Today I want to encourage you to look outside the usual options for gaining publicity for your business.

Here are 3 ‘out of the box’ ideas:

  • Approach a local school or community group that fits in with your values and offer them either product or $ to use as a fundraiser in return for exposure . (Then go to your suppliers and ask for a deal or be savvy about any recent specials you have access to)
  • Look for any local business groups that hold breakfast or events and offer to sponsor part of the catering or give a product or branded giveaway to each attendee. You’d be surprised how often this works.
  • If you are a serviced based business, offer a free consultaltion to members of local schools or groups. You may just have to wait until they are looking for some additional giveaways for parents or members.

Enjoy!

Kathy Smail

What to do when sales are bad…

We’re in a tough climate, sales are harder to get than they were pre-GFC (Global Financial Crisis).

This doesn’t mean it’s time to bail and run, although many good businesses are choosing to get out of the hard slog of seemingly overwhelming effort and I don’t blame them. Sometimes there’s a point when a business owner has had enough and that makes it the right time for them.

I’d like to give you a couple of tips to give you a kick start:

  1. Is your offer/product/service still current? – Look at your offer compared to the market today.
  2. Are you reaching your target consumer? – Is the person who will purchase from you, still hearing about you or from you?
  3. How are you building more consumers? – What strategies are you using to gain ground? (even if it feels like you’re losing some)
  4. Get some help – Get fresh eyes on your business for pointers.

The answers and outcomes of the above will get you back on track.

Contact me if you’re up to the ‘fresh eyes’ stage or need some help with doing a review of where your business currently stands and I can help.

Kathy Smail

Working on a Wire…

It’s been a busy week. I’ve started a new project which I’m enjoying (mind you I’m only 3 days in!)

I heard from a client recently who asked how to ensure that their advertising $ are spent in the right place to bring in the most return.

There’s a fine line to tread when deciding about advertising. You need to decide what type of advertising you need; a ‘call to action’ or ‘branding’.

A ‘call to action’ is advertising that has requires an immediate response from clients or customers and generally has an end date. It could be in the form of a sale of nominated products or services or value added offers if redeemed in a certain period. A ‘call to action’ approach is easily quantifiable as it is soon obvious if sales have increased.

Branding is a longer term approach to advertising. A branding program requires a determination of the business’ particular offer; a point of difference (sometimes called a POD) that separates your business from the competition. Branding is the approach that you need to ensure that you are clearly visible and memorable to your clients or customers in your chosen field.

Developing a branding program can strategically place the business in its correct place therefore creating more opportunities for additional sales.

Of course a branding campaign can be supported by periodic ‘call to action’ advertising.

Contact me to develop a targeted Advertising Campaign for your business!

Enjoy!

 

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