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Saturday, 07 June 2014
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I admit it. I have an unquenchable thirst for marketing intelligence. There are more ideas and strategies running through my head at any one time than I can share in client meetings, staff presentations, or even the longest marketing plans. That’s why I share them online. You can always catch up with the latest right here.

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Monday, 29 August 2016
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TFP

Relationship skills are essential in every day of our lives yet not always instinctive. As teenagers transition to adults it gets much harder. TFP  (Thriving Families Program) is offered by the Catholic Charities of Wayne County offers support and guidance in developing healthy, positive relationships whether they be with family members, significant others, employers, friends or other important people i their lives.

The TFP team is outstanding in their service to 18-24 year-olds in the Wayne Co. community.  I’m honored to be asked by Peter Dohr  and Inga Rogas to create the marketing launch for a very important project and grateful for the stellar creative team that we are working with (Andrew Soucier, Julie Garland-Clementi, Chris Rimlinger, Stacey Rowe) that has and will continue to bring visibility and clarity to the program (including with this great Fox Rochester news segment with Norma Holland).  As we grow I invite you to visit www.ourtfp.org and to share this post.

TFP Thriving Families Program

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Thursday, 09 June 2016
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4 Marketers graphic

4 Marketers Ranked 50 Content Marketing Tactics Based on Effort and Impact

Content Marketing has an overwhelming amount of options that has clients and marketers spinning. Determining which ones are best suited for a campaign can be challenging. Nik Livadas, a Full-Stack Inbound Marketing agency owner, created a project for 4 of who specialize in marketing from different specialties to evaluate 50 different content marketing tactics. Because we approach marketing differently the results created some obvious differences but there were also tactics we could agree on.

You’ll find my picks most often removed from the other 3 marketers because I sit on the client side of the desk. Many clients don’t know much about the tactics on this list, and even when they do, it’s not easy for them to use a tactic as successfully as a specialize marketer can.

Here’s the full report… it’s worth scrolling through the easy to read format Nik created. In our next segment on this report we’ll dive deep into our top picks and why we think they’re important.
Kudos to Nik for all his effort in creating and managing this project, which demonstrates the value of collaborative co-work offices.

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Wednesday, 25 May 2016
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Nice article for small/entrepreneurial business owners on 5 EASY tips to keep  your marketing on track.  #2 is so important…if you are going to the effort to create a digital advertising program don’t just take leads to your website home page.  Create a dedicated, action driven landing pages that brings leads further down your funnel.  Read on…

 

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Monday, 16 May 2016
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Turn OFF notifications when you’re updating your profile otherwise every change you make during that session will create notification in the News feed.  Be sure to turn notifications back on when you are done editing!
How to:  Under your thumbnail in upper right corner select from the dropdown menu:

Privacy&Setting ->Privacy->Sharing Profile Edits -> yes/noLinkedIn Change Notification

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Thursday, 12 May 2016
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Networking

Networking ranks as one of the easiest, most cost effective marketing tactics yet it’s one many business owners (and professionals) avoid like the plague. Roadblocks such as not seeing the value, not having time, and not knowing where to start prevent businesses from benefiting from this simple yet valuable marketing building block.

Overcoming the barriers to networking and learning a few tips turns this perceived drudgery into a lead generation tactic that truly results in sales.

Why bother?

SUCCEEDING IN BUSINESS IS ALL
ABOUT MAKING CONNECTIONS
Richard Branson

“There must be a good reason behind all this networking stuff”. The value of networking often gets underestimated, yet those who rock it get great rewards.

               Here’s why it’s worth it.

Build visibility organically – there’s no better way for you to build relationships and your brand than a firm handshake and friendly smile.

Build your network – leverage the contacts and customers others have in your networking circles.

Expand your knowledge – learn from other business owners/professionals, especially about local business issues and events you won’t read about in the local paper.

Where should I start?

IT’S NOT WHO YOU KNOW,
IT’S WHO KNOWS YOU.

Finding the appropriate opportunities in your community is key.  Being specific about who you do and don’t want to connect with allows you to sort through the many options for the ones that will yield the best results for you.

Here are some suggested opportunities for putting your best foot forward.

Local Chamber of Commerce – regular meetings allows you to connect often and build better relationships; most have educational events and special events like mini trade shows that allow you to build exposure.

Local Rotary – provides you the opportunity to network and contribute to local charities through programs, events and activities.  Build your brand while you give back.

Organized networking groups – typically these groups meet weekly either early in the day or lunch time.  From chapters of national networking organizations to home-grown groups, you’ll likely find several to choose from.  Most allow you to visit once or twice so you can see if the group is right for you, and they traditionally only allow one member from each industry/business type in the group so there’s no competition.  The focus of these groups is lead-generation and an emphasis on growing members’ businesses.

Engage with your house of worship –  the common bond of spirit makes creating conversation and doing business together easier.

Connect while you workout or play – gyms, golf, tennis and boating clubs have been known for ages to be fantastic places to casually build relationships that can be cultivated for business.

Create your own networking group  –  reach out to complimentary business owners and form a regular coffee or lunch meeting.

Join a committee or non-profit board – demonstrate your expertise and give-back while helping with an event or enriching an organization’s mission.

Attend local business workshops, educational events, awards ceremonies – expand your industry and local community knowledge while you make connections.             

 How to make it work?

NETWORKING IS NOT COLLECTING CONTACTS.
NETWORKING IS ABOUT PLANTING RELATIONSHIPS.
– MiShaat

Showing up in the first step but how you network defines whether you’re just collecting cards or truly building a network that will you can benefit from.

Here’s how to set behaviors that maximize your networking efforts.

  • Always have business cards to hand out (duh, right? But so many people don’t bring them!). If you forget them or run out be sure to get others’ cards and follow-up immediately with email.  Flyers with special offers and promotional items can work well also.
  • Be able to clearly say what your company does, how it does it better than the competition and what your role is in a clear manner. Don’t assume everyone knows what your company does by its name or what your role is by your title.
  • Ask what you can do to help others grow their business/career? They’ll enviably ask you the same, so you both win.
  • When asked how they can help be specific about what you need to move forward now, whether it’s suggestion for a potential client, software or tool recommendation that would make your job/company more efficient, or ask about other networking opportunities they might attend.
  • Be sure to follow up!
    • Send each new contact an email with your contact, Social Media details (LinkedIn, business Facebook, Instagram, etc), a reminder of what you do and what you discussed. Short and sweet.
    • Set up a coffee or lunch date with those who have a greater potential to be a connector, partner or client.
  • Consider creating an email list of contacts to send brief, regular emails with upcoming events, local business information and your favorite tips. You’ll be providing value plus keeping top of mind.

When will I see the value?

EVERYONE SHOULD BUILD THEIR
NETWORK BEFORE THEY NEED IT.
–  Dave Delaney

The true value of your network won’t be entirely clear until you’ve leveraged it for a business-relevant solution. The goal is to build the resource before that opportunity arises.  Talk to your peers about their networking efforts, perhaps join them at their next event.  Make a plan to expand your networking efforts and you undoubtedly begin to see the value.

Consider that good networking can be one of your lowest cost and, potentially, most successful marketing efforts.  You’ll be surprised with who you meet and where business comes from once you’ve established a routine of attending networking events and a system for building relationships with your new contacts.

 

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Wednesday, 02 March 2016
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Good article on the easy and valuable local marketing tactics businesses should take advantage of. The first, and one so many business owners don’t do, is claiming and updating their Google My Business listing. Read more…

 

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Tuesday, 23 February 2016
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I have had the good fortune of spending time with my Millennial daughter and her friends in the course of the last few months. I enjoyed sitting back and listening, especially to controversial topics to see where they would take them. As I did this I thought of the countless complaints I’ve heard by business leaders that Millennials are self-absorbed, unmotivated internet addicts who don’t communicate well. And then I thought, is that really the case? Or is it that they live life differently and business leaders just aren’t tuned into them.

Here’s what I found out when I tuned in….

Millennials care.

They care deeply about the world they live in and how they can affect it. This generation is plugged into what is happening around the world, not just their neighborhood. They have a righteousness about making the world a better place to live. They want to live and work in a more transparent society that is fueled by companies with a mission of goodness, not huge profits, and aim to make the world a better, cleaner, healthier place. Read more.

Take away: You might want to revisit your company mission.

Millennials  are passionate.

They are fueled by their passion, often highly focused, not their college major or current career title. This generation wants a very different work life, lifestyle and behavior set than their parents, and certainly their grandparents. They see the status quo as ineffective, inefficient and limiting because they value their passions as their drivers, not society’s expectations. Read more.

Take away: Understand what’s important to your hires – create meaningful experience not just a job.

Millennials  are informed.

They are connected to more information, real time, than the generations before. The internet has changed information distribution massively, and this generation mines it with expert precision. These folks get news immediately (sometimes before the media channels). They research facts and opinions quickly, and they rely on condensed content and the ability to search for it in multiple areas.

Take away: They won’t be fooled by glossy websites and fluffy job descriptions. They’ll research you first then let you sell them on the opportunity to work for you.

Millennials  are determined.

Determined to follow their own path, not the one social norms have planned for them. We might see them as “head-strong” or “self-absorbed” but they see their opportunities as means to better themselves so they can make a difference and live a fulfilled life. They not satisfied with “take that job because it’s a job”. They know they can find an enriching experience if they keep searching for it (despite their parents’ nervousness about generating an income in the meantime!). Read more.

Take away: Show them how they’ll grow at your company.

As business leaders and employers we have to get out of our “box”, the one we’ve worked hard to build. We need to listen more to what is important to this generation because they will be leaders too. We should criticize less and learn to adapt (i.e. use technology the way they do) because we need to connect with them. We need to take a page out of their book and look at our business practices and behaviors to see if we really are making a difference or just maintaining the status quo.
There’s actually a lot we can learn from Millennials.

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Wednesday, 17 February 2016
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Great article by Aaron Riddle on four of the most important marketing skills needed today.  So many clients suffer with at least two of these (content generation and SEO).  Whether you have these skills in-house or outsourced your company will do much better when you have your marketing bases covered.  Read more..

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Wednesday, 10 February 2016
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Basic Marketing Tactics Still Work

Great article by Brian Sutter on marketing for small business! There’s no denying digital marketing tactics are very effective, highly measurable.  In fact, they are a necessity.  That said, “old school” marketing tactics still have an important role in small business success.  Read on!

 

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Monday, 25 January 2016
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The benefits of videos for marketing are undeniable yet many companies haven’t grasped using them. Still not convinced of their value?  Check out this Infographic.  Note that videos that demo your product or service are preferred over “about us” videos.