Archive for the ‘Marketing and Branding’ Category

The Softer Side of Brand Analysis

Friday, June 16th, 2017

We’ve written multiple posts on how to evaluate your brand, the fact that your brand is largely out of your control because it’s defined by your audience, and how to effectively manage your brand. Brands are subjective and live in the minds of your consumer, or business, audience. It can be tough to quantify the strength or weakness of a brand, which can be endlessly frustrating for numbers-driven marketers and business owners. (more…)

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Your Website and Your Employer Brand

Tuesday, June 6th, 2017

Since the dawn of the Internet Age, businesses have been quick to see the benefit of a company website to attract customers; however, a company website, like any communication channel, should be thought of in the context of all of an organization’s stakeholders. This includes business partners and potential business partners, as well as employees and – the focus of this blog post – potential employees. (more…)

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Competing with the Big Guys: Leveraging a Narrow Niche, the Personal Touch and Agility

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

Whether you’re a startup looking to break into an existing market, or an existing business looking to branch into a new product or service line, it can be intimidating to survey the competitive environment and find yourself potentially face-to-face with behemoth multinational corporations and Fortune 500 companies. While a mega-competitor could, theoretically, direct its massive resources into forcing out an upstart competitor, there are some ways to compete by exploiting the advantages small can have over large. (more…)

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Best Practices for Social Media Marketing

Tuesday, May 16th, 2017

It’s hard to succeed at anything if you’re not focused. Whether you’re golfing, driving, taking an exam or giving a presentation, losing focus on your objective can be disastrous. The same is true of your social media activity. Granted social media marketing is a longer-term activity than golfing or giving a presentation, but the importance of focus is no less important. In particular, we’ve selected three key elements marketers should keep their focus on when engaging in social media. (more…)

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Influencers: Organic or Paid? Making the Right Choice Matters

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017

Testimonials and endorsements have been a mainstay in marketing for many years. In the online environment, these concepts have been combined, embraced, and refined to drive a hot trend: influencer marketing. It works. If you think about your own purchase behaviors, you can probably trace many of those purchases—whether for some electronic device, a hairstyle, a meal, or a car—to a recommendation or referral that came from a friend or relative or that was prompted through some online endorsement from an individual you admire. How effective are these kind of endorsements? Both Nielsen and McKinsey have studied the issue.

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Best Practices in Using Live Streaming Video

Sunday, April 30th, 2017

8970947 - illuminated light bulb in a row of dim ones concept for creativity, innovation and solutionVideo has long been touted as a must-do in content marketing, particularly in a business-to-consumer (B2C) environment. Many marketers have used video to capture special moments; showcase products, services, and personnel; and provide how-to instruction of various types. One need only look to the tremendous popularity of YouTube to discern that video communication is something consumers crave. But, can video work in the business-to-business environment? Social media channels, videographers and content marketers are betting the answer is a resounding “YES”! (more…)

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Is Your Business at Risk From the Threat of New Entrants?

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

Any business school graduate has probably had a healthy dose of Michael Porter’s Five Forces, and for good reason. The framework is a great way to look at the competitive landscape. Porter’s framework is designed to look at the competitiveness of a particular industry, as opposed to companies within that industry. For example, you might use the framework to determine the attractiveness of starting a soft drink company, as opposed to investing in PepsiCo versus The Coca-Cola Company. We’ve provided a broad overview of the tool in the past, but we’ve recently been taking time to look at each individual force in greater detail. Today, we’re diving deeper in the threat of new entrants. (more…)

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The Power of Suppliers: Are You At Risk?

Tuesday, April 18th, 2017

Michael Porter’s Five Forces framework uses industrial organization economics to evaluate the attractiveness of an industry based on the overall level of competition within that industry. The more competitive an industry, the lower profits will be. Conversely, an industry with little competition is likely to be more profitable and, therefore, more attractive. We’ve already written on the Porter’s Five Forces generally. Now we’re looking at each of the forces individually and in greater detail. Today we’re taking a closer look at the supplier power. (more…)

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Competitive Rivalry: What’s the Situation for Your Business?

Tuesday, April 11th, 2017

Michael Porter developed his Five Forces framework as an associate professor at the Harvard School of Business in 1979 as a way to help evaluate the attractiveness of different industries based on the primary five forces he saw driving the competitive environment of those industries. We’ve covered the framework generally, and now we’re looking at each individual force. Today we look at competitive rivalry. (more…)

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Best Practices for Marketing Complex Products and Services

Wednesday, March 29th, 2017

In the Information Age, consumers often have very short attention spans. There’s simply so much content out there competing for your attention. Even the typical 30-second TV commercial has become too long for many consumers to focus on. At the same time, technology becomes increasingly sophisticated. Squeezed in the middle of these two trends are those poor souls trying to tell the market about their revolutionary, spectacular product or service that happens to be extremely complicated. (more…)

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