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Archive for the ‘Business Development’ Category

People Just Aren’t Influenced by Social Media – Ask Anyone

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

A recent Gallup poll indicates that just 5 percent of U.S. residents say that social media had “a great deal of influence” on their purchasing decisions; 62 percent said that it had no influence at all.

Yet, companies in the U.S. spent $5.1 billion on social media in 2013. Are they nuts?

Likely not. The thing of it is, (more…)

De-teching From Time to Time Can Fuel Innovation

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

A few weekends ago, for one glorious afternoon, I turned off all of my tech devices, pulled out a pile of Harvard Business Review magazines (the hard copy kind) and, with nothing but a legal pad and pen in hand, set out to engage in some thinking time. I sat on  my deck, without even my Bose SoundLink, and just lost myself in learning. I literally  (more…)

Are You Giving Your All To Your Current Customers?

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

A number of years ago I was on a weekend outing with my husband and a group of his friends, including one guy who had recently gotten engaged to a “knockout.”  She was gorgeous–long, really long, blonde hair; perfect make-up; great  nails, dressed exceptionally.

The rest of the women (well, maybe I’m projecting my own thoughts on the others, but…) thought: “Wow! How do we compare to that!!?!” Fortunately, she was one of the many beautiful women (and men) that I’ve met over the years who wasn’t really that “full of themselves.” Over the course of the weekend after many conversations, and a few cocktails from time to time, we got to talking. I admitted my awe about how well put together she was and my wish that I could be as well put together.

She laughed and said: “You should have seen me last week!” “What do you mean?,” I asked.

(more…)

Do you think your customers just “don’t get it”?

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

Every once in a while I hear someone make a comment about their customers like: “They just don’t get it.” Or, “what they don’t understand is…” The truth is, with any audience, when you hear yourself saying these words warning bells should start going off inside your head. Chances are, it’s not them, it’s you that doesn’t “get it.”

As I work with clients, or speak with prospective clients, it’s not uncommon for them to lament that their target audience just “doesn’t understand the value” of their products or services. That certainly can be a valid communication opportunity. But, in  my mind, the opportunity doesn’t lie in trying to come up with new and ever-more-creative ways to spin your messages to that audience. Instead, the real opportunity lies in  (more…)

Supporting the Community: Tough Choices Need to be Approached Strategically

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

Supporting the local community can be expensive. Even large organizations have to be careful about how and where they lend their time – and money. Is there value – beyond personal satisfaction – in supporting local events and activities? Which ones? How can you say “no” graciously to the many requests that come your way?

Research from the Council on Foundations, indicates that over a 10-year period, companies with good corporate citizenship images and programs enjoyed a 33 percent lead in growth of profits over competitors without such programs.

These efforts, though, need to be done strategically! The factors that go into determining whether you will support specific goodwill advertising requests are the same factors that go into virtually every business decision you make: your market, your business objectives and the resources you have available (your budget).

As you work to develop your own “goodwill policy,” follow these steps: (more…)

Selling Yourself, or Your Services, on LinkedIn

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

Social media – and particularly LinkedIn – has emerged as THE new method of job search, providing significant benefits to both job seekers and recruiters. I’ve been a long-time LinkedIn proponent and use it extensively for my own professional communication needs. I also highly recommend it to the students I work with each semester as the “go to” resource for job search–whether looking for internships, freelance opportunities or full-time jobs.

In fact, at the beginning of each semester in one of my classes I like to use it as an introduction to “selling something” — in this case themselves. And, truthfully, the steps and process for selling yourself or your business services via LinkedIn are absolutely the same as best practice marketing for any product or service. (more…)

No Social Media? No Way!

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

Financial institutions are on social media. Hospitals and healthcare systems are on social media. Even law enforcement agencies are becoming engaged. While some groups have, for very good reason, been slow to adopt social media as a means of communicating with various audiences, it’s fair to say that most organizations that have an audience of some sort have found social media to be a “must do” rather than a “we need to think about it.”

But not all. (more…)

Which Comes First: Customer Service or Customers?

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

I saw an interesting comment on a blog site recently in response to an article about 6 effective marketing tips for small businesses. One poster noted that, among the small businesses she works with, her focus is on providing strong customer service and trusting that the rest will come. (Sort of a Field of Dreams approach I guess…)

There is, of course, absolutely nothing wrong with focusing on customer service–in fact I’m all in favor of it. But (more…)

6000 Views and Counting – LinkedIn Authorship Gets Results!

Thursday, May 15th, 2014

LinkedIn recently added a new option for many of its members — the ability to write and publish posts that would be put before a broader audience than their own connections. If you see a little pencil icon next to the paperclip icon in the “Share an update…” box at the top of your home page, you have the ability to create and publish posts. Both my consulting profile and my freelance writing profile have these icons as do all my clients’ profiles.

So we’ve been experimenting with this option to see what kind of activity we’re able to generate.

Yesterday I posted an item on LinkedIn that I’d recently written as a blog post–“Four Little Words That Can Reveal a Lot: ‘Why Do You Ask?’”–the response has been phenomenal (at least by our standards). Last night as I was reviewing online activity for all of my accounts I noticed that I had about (more…)

Four Little Words That Can Reveal a Lot: “Why do you ask?”

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

A recent experience I had, contrasted with a similar experience my husband had a few years ago, made me consider how easy it can be to not only gather key marketing research intelligence from customers but also to improve the service experience, generate positive word-of-mouth and, ultimately, increase sales. (more…)