Archive for the ‘Marketing and Branding’ Category

Creating Customer Journey Maps

Saturday, August 29th, 2020

Marketers often speak of the “customer journey.” It’s a concept that describes the various decisions customer make and the interactions they have with a company from the point where they’ve identified a need until the point when they make a purchase—and beyond. A customer journey map is important because it helps marketers visually depict the customer journey and identify areas that may represent barriers or risks of loss. It provides a documented, explicit vision of how customers will interact with your company and is a good tool for sharing with employees to help them understand the journey and the role that they play in engaging and retaining customers. (more…)

“Must Do” Marketing Lessons Learned During COVID-19

Wednesday, August 26th, 2020

Customer reviews, client reviews, best PR firm, public relations, content marketingI’ve been doing a series of webinars during the pandemic for a Women’s Business Center in my area on topics related to marketing and maintaining a business presence. As part of the process, I’ve been spending time reviewing, analyzing, and reporting on various best practices that I’ve either seen or that I’ve practiced with clients or my own business. It’s been interesting to watch how many businesses have successfully, and quickly, changed their processes or entire business models to adapt to “the new normal.”

Yet some haven’t. (more…)

Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Market Research

Wednesday, August 19th, 2020

Women considering yes, no, maybe optionsMarket research is definitely something that even very small businesses can do on their own but there are a lot of myths and misconceptions related to research that can cause them to make decisions based on incomplete or inaccurate information. While it’s impossible to cover everything related to doing research well, here are some general strategies and best practices that businesses of any size can put to use to leverage the value of gathering market research to improve their business offerings and marketing effectiveness.

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6 Tips for Using Social Media as a Lead Generation Tool

Tuesday, August 4th, 2020

We launched Strategic Communications in 2008, at a time when the country was plunging into a deep recession. It wasn’t a great time to land new clients. But it was a great time to take a deep dive into something that was relatively new at the time, at least from a business perspective–social media. At the time there was an interesting talent gap that represented an opportunity for us. Most businesspeople didn’t have experience in using social media channels for marketing purposes and colleges weren’t yet educating students about these new marketing tools. So we were early adopters and spent quite a bit of time learning about and experimenting with the tools that were best positioned in the business-to-business (B2B) space: LinkedIn and Twitter.

Since that time we’ve built our social channels organically and have helped a number of clients do the same. There’s no real magic to this. In fact, the basic tenets of effective marketing via social channels are really the same as they are for using any marketing tools. We recently responded to a reporter’s inquiry about our top tips for marketers using social media as a lead generation tool. We pointed to six:

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Some Tips For Getting Traction on LinkedIn

Friday, July 17th, 2020

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I’m often asked by colleagues—and sometimes even competitors—where I find my clients. There are probably three primary channels that work best for me: referrals, speaking engagements, and LinkedIn.

I have used LinkedIn myself for a number of years to establish myself as a thought leader in the marketing/digital marketing space and to generate leads and new clients. Many of my clients come through connections I’ve made on LinkedIn, or by showing up in search results from people/companies looking for marketing assistance. I also help various clients use LinkedIn for their own lead generation or thought leadership efforts. For those in the business-to-business (B2B) space, it truly is a valuable tool—if it’s used effectively.

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What Channels are Included in Digital Marketing and How Do You Measure Digital Marketing Success?

Friday, July 3rd, 2020

by Linda Pophal

My first job out of college was working in traditional direct mail marketing and I spent ten years with that company. I loved the work because it was so measurable so you could tell what worked, what didn’t and continually make improvements to boost response. Digital marketing, of course, offers even greater opportunities to measure the effectiveness of content in a variety of ways so it’s a field I really enjoy.

Literally any content that is accessible online–e.g. via the internet–is considered to be digital marketing. (more…)

Marketing During, and After, the Pandemic

Friday, June 19th, 2020

As businesses slowly begin to open back up, many find themselves doing business far differently than they may have before the pandemic. Safety is top of mind. Not all customers feel comfortable at this point, interacting in person with the businesses they may have frequented without fear in the past. That means for many companies, a combination of in-store/in-person and online or socially distanced interactions. Many are operating on the fly, figuring things out as they go. But now may be an excellent time to take a step back and update, or create, a marketing plan to help you move forward more strategically. 

Here’s some advice for doing just that: (more…)

Creating a Competitive Positioning Matrix

Friday, June 12th, 2020

Every business has competitors and needs to successfully position itself against those competitors to succeed in the marketplace. Creating a competitive analysis matrix can be a good way to help you identify areas of opportunity for your business and its products and services. Here we show you how.
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Conducting a Competitive Analysis

Thursday, June 4th, 2020

Competitors are a fact of life for businesses of all types and sizes. Even if you think you have no competition (and some companies do think this), you do! We like to define competition, broadly, as “any available alternative to what you have to offer.” For instance, I worked in the healthcare industry for a number of years, leading the organization’s marketing efforts. We had direct competitors (other hospitals and clinics) serving the same market we served. We also had indirect competitors—Google search for instance. How often have you gone online to find information about some medical issue rather than make an appointment to see the doctor?

The point is, we all have competition. (more…)

Finding Multiple Uses for Your Content to Extend Its Longevity and Reach

Tuesday, May 12th, 2020

Content is always changing shapes, morphing into something new. Long before there was the written word, people gathered to tell stories around campfires. Before there was a printing press, there were handwritten books. Then, of course, came ebooks. Now, our content comes to us through a dizzying array of devices and platforms. Smart creators are using the growing number of delivery options to continue to reshape content into new—and sometimes improved—forms.

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