Small Business Marketing

Why Use An Independent Marketing Team?

Every week I meet with owners, executives, and managing directors of small businesses from across the US. In these meetings lay the ultimate battle of value. Will I get enough ROI? Do they have enough on-hand talent to handle what they promise? Are they credible and transparent? Do we get along?

How To Master Frame Control
Have you ever went into a sales pitch and started using old techniques to try and close the deal like the age-old SPIN selling tactic? I can remember growing up and watching all those old movies from the 80s that featured "go getters" in suits and screaming out to each other "Always Be Closing!". 
The New Rule For Small Businesses That Isn't Getting Noticed
Back in 2011, the Georgia Legislature started an initiative that would encourage the growth of small and medium businesses through crowdfunding investments. The new rule change, which is was officially in effect since last month, will allow for SMB’s to get around the previous restrictions of crowdfunding in the state. 
Effective Marketing Strategies That Don't Cost A Ton Of Money
Working out of the Atlanta Tech Village, I have ran into loads of companies that are operating off of a shoestring budget with limited capital to spend on marketing efforts. Sometimes, even the thought of using paid advertising makes a small business owner shutter. Mainly because owners aren’t necessarily marketers, and there’s a lot of uncertainty around the return on investment. However, there’s a number of ways that a small business can leverage digital marketing by spending very little and targeting exactly who their customers are. 
3 reasons why it’s better to start your business in Dallas
People are in search for the next best place to start their business, the next city to be crowned the title of “the next Silicon Valley.” In the coming years, there has been one consistently outstanding city that has been displaying strong entrepreneurial and technological growth that has the potential to become the next tech hub – and that city is Dallas.
Is Your Lack of Online Marketing Killing Your Business?
Do you remember in business school when you learned about the four Ps: Product, Place, Price and Promotion in your Marketing 101 class? A lot has changed since I was sitting in my first Marketing class 20+ years ago, however the 4 Ps are still relevant. While marketing professors still refer to the 4 Ps, the implementation is quite different.

Remember the days when you thought 'Place' referred to real estate, a good a visible store front? Then we hit the "dot.com era" and began to think beyond brick and mortar to having a website. In today's fast moving digital economy you need even more than just a digital presence.

Now you need a website that is mobile-friendly.  The computer that we use the most, is the one that fits in the palm of our hand. In fact, by 2018, according to eMarketer, global smartphone users will reach the 2.5 billion mark. And nearly 86 million consumers will make a purchase on their device in 2016.
Chip, Joanna, Shiplap and Creating a Killer Brand Identity
"How far do you live from Waco, TX?" "Do you watch HGTV?" "Have you seen Chip and Joanna?" These are questions I've heard from California to Pennsylvania and Kansas to Tennessee.

People are just obsessed with Chip and Joanna Gaines, a couple living on a farm in central Texas who spends their days remodeling dilapidated homes. These are just normal folks, flipping inexpensive houses in a small town.  They decorate the homes with vintage farm items, decorate with painted exposed paneling (now called shiplap), and have their friend repurpose some old wood into a dining room table. 

If I told you five years ago that this would have people glued to their TV waiting for the big reveal, or traveling to a town plagued by bad press to shop at a store in an abandoned rusty silo, you would think I was truly crazy. If I told you this was big business, including real estate, a Bed and Breakfast, a store front, a bakery and branded items, you would want on-board.
Want to Generate More Leads? Get A Landing Page
Landing pages are one of the most important elements of a lead generation campaign. In fact, according to MarketingSherpa’s research, landing pages are effective for 94% of B2B and B2C companies. So why are so few companies using them?

A landing Page is a single page within your website where you can direct visitors to one particular offer without the distractions of everything else on your website. Visitors are on a landing page for one and only purpose: to complete the lead capture form.
Develop a Call-To-Action that Generates Leads
If you have been following my blog series on Lead Generation, you know that you need to have an offer to engage your prospects.  If you missed that blog, you can check it how HERE.

The offer is basically the carrot, now what you need is the pole and string from which to dangle that well-crafted carrot and to get your prospects to act or engage.

What gets our audience to reach for the carrot is your call-to-action (CTA). When effectively crafted, they will capture people’s attention and persuading them to act.

Not all CTAs are effective or will result in action. It's important to consider what your competitors are offering and then determine why someone may choose your offer over the competition.

Once you have your offer decided, now it's time to get the word out.  Here's how:
When Life Hands You Lemons...Make a Cocktail
How do you respond to a week that goes completely opposite as planned?  In business we know that having processes in place is what makes for efficient operations, but what about when those operations don't work?

My week has been anything but normal and this disruption may be just what my businesses needed.  When you hear the term disruption, do you think of a disturbance that interrupts an event, activity, or process?  Or do you think of it as Clayton Christensen has defined: disruption that creates a new market and value network and eventually disrupts an existing market, displacing the established?

What I have found is that these can be two-sides of the same coin.  I realize that saying both definitions of 'disruption' work together is a bit like saying we should make lemonade out of the lemons we've been dealt.

Here's how I made something positive out of a week that went off the typical process.
3 Best Marketing Tools for Lead Generation other than your Website
We all know that having a website is vital to any business.  It is your digital storefront, greeter and initial explanation of your businesses products or services.

While websites can be optimized for better lead generation, what do you do for customers who are not coming directly to your website?  Here are three marketing tools that will help you gain more leads.
Why Your Personal Brand is so Important to Your Business Brand
For entrepreneurs, personal brand and your business brand are often one in the same.  Even if you have numerous employees, the owner still sets the tone of the business and is usually engaged with the client during the sales process or at implementation.

If you are an entrepreneur and haven't considered your personal brand and its impact on your business brand, it's time to get started.
How to Get Started with Google Analytics
Google Analytics can be a very effective tool for entrepreneurs if you know how to use it correctly. Not only does it inform you of your sites digital traffic flow and about new incoming traffic; it also helps raise revenue for your apps or online business sites.  Amazing right?
Getting the Contract: Simple Marketing Tips for Contractors
Sometimes we're in conflict between our marketing professional selves and our personal or professional buyer selves. I'm in conflict now as I try to get my home back together after a hail storm pummeled our roof, fence and who knows what.   

My conflict is seeing how repair services are marketed to us and how as a buyer I perceive their efforts to meet my needs .  Yes, I see the hail storm as an opportunity for them. They have services and products in need, a well-defined target audience, and a high rate of anticipated purchase for their product.  For excitement, they face multiple competitors in a race to a sale.

This could be a chance to see multiple marketing styles and find out what works best on me.  It's a good test because all contenders start out the same.  No company has an inside track or perceived advantage. I was not already in the market, had not contacted any suppliers, no former suppliers have claimed me, and my insurance company offered only vague guidelines, no company recommendations. So how did they do?
3 Advantages to Outsourcing Your Marketing
The trend for small businesses is not adding more staff, but hiring an industry expert partner. Managing employees takes investment in training, paying for benefits, and so on.  Even worse, what if that individual is not the right fit for you business culture, then what?

What makes more sense is to hire a partner that off-sets the business owners weaknesses. Not as an employee, but as an adviser.

Here are some key reasons entrepreneurs should consider the outsourcing route.
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