And the entries are rolling in….We’ve received some great submissions so far. One entrant said “I know my logo is cute, but I can’t pay my bills with “cute”!
Good point! A good website is informative and nice to look at but it should work for you, pulling leads and stimulating inquiry.
Not sure if your website stinks? Request a free web report card from us to learn where you can improve.
cary, north carolina
BusinessWeek and ZoomProspector recently released a study which named the best city in each state for small business startups. Our very own Cary was named the winner in North Carolina and the proprietor of our downtown neighbor, Ashworth Drugs, was quoted. Read the full article for the selection criteria and more on the other cities named best for entrepreneurs.
Cary has 3.39 startups per 1,000 people and 36 small businesses per 1,000 people.
Is the team here at Strategic Guru surprised? Not a chance. As a strategic marketing agency that works with many of these very startups, we understand why Cary and the Triangle metro area is a great place to start a new venture. Proximity to Research Triangle Park, Raleigh, and several highly regarded universities (UNC, NC State and Duke among others) provides Cary startups an educated workforce and a deep talent pool.
Thinking of starting your own business? Need smart thinking on marketing strategy consulting, lead generation, or internet marketing strategy? Talk to the Guru.
As marketing budgets tighten among companies of all sizes, folks are looking at low-cost tactics that are trackable and measurable. Because your company is known to customers and you have determined which recipients have opted-in to your list, e-mail design and messaging is the most critical element of this a campaign’s success.
Here are two points to consider when crafting an email campaign:
1. “Less is more” for an effective e-mail. An email with a shorter copy and fewer graphics work best. A clean presentation helps potential customers see your message clearly and eliminates unwanted confusion.
2. Bring in customers with a call to action. Clearly marked calls to action are important so that the customer knows the who, what, why, and where of your e-mail communication. An email with a weak or missing call to action is as ineffective as simply not sending a message at all.
Stay tuned for more email marketing tips in March.
Marketing plans should be developed strategically; the end goal to deliver leads to your sales force. A compelling call to action in an email, direct mail or other advertisement can generate warm leads by establishing an initial relationship between your company and your prospects. In one to one marketing a meaningful, valuable offer can open a conversation and drive sales. When brainstorming what offer you will extend, consider what might your prospect need that will make their job easier.
Examples of offers that generate results:
- Invitation to Topical Webinar
- Market Report
- Free Assessment
- Invitation to an Event
- Guide or Handbook
- Sample of Product
- Special Savings Coupon
- Gift card
When choosing an offer – think strategically. What offer that will be perceived as having the most value to your prospects? What will open the lines of communication?
What have you tried that worked?
Email marketing can be an effective and cost-efficient marketing tactic. It allows you to connect with customers by creating top of mind awareness of a product or service, cultivate an ongoing relationship and compel recipients to take action.
Consider just a few ways you can use email marketing to drive sales:
*Position your business as the leader in your field by sharing breaking news and developments in your industry.
*Drive traffic to your website with embedded links.
*Be eco-friendly and use email instead of snail-mail –this can earn you green cred!
*Respond quickly to market conditions with messages that arrive in recipient’s mailboxes in hours vs. days.
*Offer special discounts or coupons for email recipients.
*Encourage referrals through contests and exclusive offers.
Perhaps best of all – email marketing is trackable. Easily monitor who opens your email, who clicks through and who forwards the message. We marketers love tactics we can measure!
What are you waiting for – start collecting your permission-based email list now!
Almost every business has a website. It’s practically a prerequisite to even starting a business! Forrester Research and Razorfish found that over 90% of purchasing decisions begin online. It’s clear that a website is an important part of corporate identity, but it also should be part of your marketing plan. Be sure you are using your website strategically.
Some businesses see their website as a digital brochure, highlighting their products and services – the old features/benefits approach. It’s one way communication, with little chance for the target to interact with the business or brand. Thus, it’s crucial that your website draw your targets in and act as a lead generation system. Here are a few tips to create a website that engages with targets rather than simply talking at them:
•Make sure you are leading your visitors down a clear cut path. Point them down a road that ends in an opportunity to convert to a warm lead.
•Give your visitors multiple chances to continue the conversation – sign them up for permission-based newsletters, invite them to follow you on Twitter, or connect with you in the social media world at Facebook or MySpace. In other words, make it easy for your visitors to continue the relationship.
•Refresh your website content periodically. Not only does Google reward you for this, but it encourages your visitors to come to your site on a regular basis.
•Add a blog to your site. This is an easy way to refresh content and let your prospects talk back to you.
•Be sure you understand how to make Google find and rank your site. This means making sure your site is search-engine friendly by using keywords and meta-text.
Although this list is not exhaustive, it’s a great place to begin if you are starting from scratch or re-vamping your site. Remember, your site can be one of the best lead generation tools your business has.
Let Strategic Guru guide you to an internet marketing strategy that can help your business grow. Call 919.461.0551 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for a complementary consultation.