Archive for the ‘Marketing’ Category

Surviving and Thriving in a Blue Ocean

Thursday, March 5th, 2015

In a previous blog post, we discussed the difference between blue oceans and red oceans. As a very brief recap, red oceans are the “what is” of the industry; it’s what is being done. Blue oceans, by contrast, are an open frontier. They are the unknown. They are the space where companies create their own new markets.

The benefits of blue oceans are apparent. There’s no competition yet. You invented the market and are in many ways a monopolist. Given the benefits of blue oceans, every business would operate in them if they could; however, it’s not that easy. (more…)

Tweeting Locally

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

One of the many things I enjoy about marketing is attempting to generate the most results with the least among of time, money and effort. I want to get more for less. From an advertising standpoint, that means, for instance, that just because the Super Bowl pulls in a large audience each year, it may not make sense to put your message in front of that audience unless a significant percentage of it might represent potential customers for your products or services.

Social media is a lot like that. Just because social media can deliver an international audience doesn’t mean that it makes sense for you to be out there communicating with an international audience. In fact, for many businesses, (more…)

Social Media Best Practices for SOHOs: You Don’t Have to be Big to be Successful Online!

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

One of the benefits—and potential downfalls—of the online environment is that it is a great equalizer. The smallest company, including solo operations, can present a “big company” feel, effectively competing against the big players in their industries. This can also present a downside, of course, for those seeking goods and services from online providers; all that glitters is not, necessarily, gold, so caveat emptor certainly applies.

Still, for small companies, and even individual practitioners in service industries like consulting, law, accounting, engineering, etc., it can be relatively easy to establish a strong presence online.

We’ve done that for our own marketing needs, and we work with a variety of other small businesses and independent consultants to help them establish a “big brand” online. In doing this, we have found some very important best practices that really must be adopted to generate results: (more…)

A Wealth of Social Media & Marketing Tips from Experts and Practitioners

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Just returned from the 6th Annual Social Media & Marketing Conference sponsored by the Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce and my head is spinning. It seems that no matter how much we may all think we know a lot about social media and/or marketing, there is always so much more to learn. I learned a lot today from both the presenters and other attendees. (more…)

Do You Know Who Your Customers Are? You May Be Surprised!

Monday, August 11th, 2014

I worked in a healthcare organization for about 10 years from 1996-2007. Back at that time the transition between referring to patients as “customers” was just emerging and it was fairly controversial. Marketing and administration favored the approach and logically it seemed to make some sense. But I can recall the debates, conflicts and consternation from clinical staff — physicians and nurses — about the use of this terminology.

At the time, I was firmly on the side of using the term “customer.” After all, I had come from the marketing world with a background in the investor-owned utility industry and a private educational firm, in addition to experience growing up in a family-owned business, so the concept of “customer” was one I firmly identified with.

In hindsight, though, (more…)

PR More Effective than Content Marketing? Probably! But…

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

Nielsen recently released a report, commissioned by inPowered which indicated that content marketing (the current, go-to communication tool for many B2B and B2C marketers) is actually 88 percent less effective than public relations (PR).

The news has the communication community abuzz online with conversations taking place in many of the social media groups I follow. Many are expressing shock, some disagreement, over the results.

But, when you think about it, it’s really just common sense.

(more…)

10 Copywriting Tips to Generate Results!

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

I’m a copywriter from way back and, although, my life has taken a number of twists and turns since my old copywriting days, writing has been a passion of mine for many, many years and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. The thing is, much of what I learned as a professional copywriter holds true regardless of the type of writing I do: whether I’m writing a brochure, copy for a newspaper ad, a script for a radio announcement or a page or blog for a web site, there are some tried and true techniques that can be used to boost the odds that the copy will get the results I’m looking for.

Following are some tips I’ve gathered and used over the years — can you add to the list? (more…)

Is It Time to Update Your Web Site?

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

Web sites have become a “must have” for businesses of any size, in any industry or geographic location. In fact, to a large degree, if you don’t have a web site, you don’t exist. When potential customers are looking for products or services they are very likely these days to turn to the Internet and do a search. If your business doesn’t come up in their search efforts, you’re not likely to be part of their consideration set. (more…)

How to Use Social Media to Grow and Market Your Business

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

The wide proliferation of social media sites–from Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to Pinterest, Google+ and Instagram–provide a myriad of opportunities for businesses of any size to connect with their target audiences. That can be good news and not-so-good news for marketers. Why? Because while the out-of-pocket costs for using most of these tools is low to none, the time investment can be significant. Add to that (more…)

Challenges on the Horizon for Marketers in 2014

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

As 2014 rapidly approaches (I can’t believe how rapidly it’s approaching…) businesses are looking ahead to the New Year and thinking of the challenges and opportunities they will face. We recently responded to a reporter’s inquiry about marketing challenges lying ahead in 2014. Here’s our perspective:

There are two key challenges that businesses are likely to face in 2014 from a marketing standpoint: one is evergreen, the other is continuing to emerge: (more…)