Category Archives: Social Networking

Online Marketing Blog: Business Turnaround Strategies that Work!

Remaining a viable business is tough in this economy. Fundamental challenges include managing cash flow,etc.  while ensuring that the pipeline of prospects remains full. So how can a business remain viable?

In theory, the answer is very simple. Just get more sales, manage your overhead costs, provide the best customer service possible, hire the best individuals, and voila, you have nothing to worry about.

In practice however, how do you do all that when business development cycles last longer, overhead costs remain the same, and competition is tougher than ever?

Well, here are three Business Turnaround Strategies that can help:

Focus on business development: If you want to remain viable, one of your top priorities must be business development. Building and keeping the pipeline full is an important activity that should take up most of your time as a business owner. Many business owners are not comfortable with cold-call but cold-emailing is another strategy that can be effectively used to create new leads.  Referrals are nice to have but allocate a bulk of your time on a regular basis to conduct active solicitation of new business. Strategies could include cold-calling, cold-emailing, or buying appointments or leads through third-parties.

Delegate non-essential tasks: We all like to be do-it-yourselvers because it helps us save money. But remember, if you aren’t a plumber by trade, then trying to fix a broken pipe by yourself ends up costing a whole lot more and takes longer than it takes a plumber-by-trade to do it.
Spend your time wisely on those tasks that utilize your skills the most. As a business owner, focus on working on growing the business and let others work on fulfilling the tasks of the business. Put a dollar value on your time and be wise about where you spend it

Leverage technology: Small business owners must take advantage of advanced technology to create efficiency and manage their time better. Some areas where you should consider investing in technology include semi or fully manual order processing, office staff spending too much time on the phone, doing manual data entry from paper to computer, matching data between two systems or between a paper and a computer based system, etc. etc.
 
Implement these strategies and you will be sure to see a difference in how your business runs, how much new business you generate, and how much efficiency is created over time.

Online Marketing Blog: Social Media’s next victim – Congressman Anthony Weiner?

Thanks to New York Congressman Anthony Weiner, we now have WeinerGate. I’m referring to the tweet originating from Congressman Andrew Weiner's twitter account in which a photo of a man’s bulging gray underwear was tweeted to a woman follower and which was then retweeted to thousands of people.
 
Of course New York Congressman Anthony Weiner calls it a “prank”; he claims it resulted from someone hacking into his twitter account. Hmmm… convenient or truly a hacked twitter account????

Hacking IS a common issue on most social media sites. But was Congressman Weiner truly a victim of hacking? Or perhaps it wasn’t a hacked account that resulted in Weinergate. Perhaps he meant to share the photo privately with the one follower not thinking how easy it is for someone to just repurpose the information or retweet it. That’s the other problem with social media websites and putting things out there for others to see without thinking it through. Things can be taken out of context and there's not much you can do about it.

Talking about hacking, I can't underscore the importance of properly managing your online accounts. Hacking is a real issue and it can be prevented by regularly changing your password. Also, make sure that your password is a bit more complicated than your birth date, street address, or using common words like “password” as your password. Simple strategies like using characters such as $ or % in the password, using upper and lower case letters along with a number or two makes for a more sturdy password. The sturdier your password, the better protected your online activities.
 
Criminal activity on social media websites continues to grow. But then so does stupid behavior on social media websites. Why is it so difficult for people to curb the instinct to bare everything in public? Why do people not realize that once it’s out there, it’s out there???

Online Marketing Blog: Balancing Life and Social Media

As if it wasn’t difficult enough to balance work-life and family, now we have to balance work-life, family, and social networking. We are constantly “twitching” to share where we are, what we are doing, what we plan to do, etc. to our network. 
 
But all this sharing is creating havoc in many lives. People are getting fired for posting inappropriate information. We hear of robberies stemming from status updates announcing vacation plans. And although reports about Facebook causing divorces and death announcements made online through Twitter may be laughable to some of us, the reality is that this is the world we live in today.
 
As business owners, we find ourselves in an even more of a quandary. Do we focus on growing the business or do we spend time online, building larger networks to grow our visibility and branding?
 
Well, ideally, businesses should rely on marketing professionals to manage their social properties so that it can be done right and done in a comprehensive manner so as to generate the desired results. However, as a business owner, if you are in a chicken or an egg situation of whether to invest the money or the time doing it yourself, here are some baby steps to help you get started:

  • Create your personalized profile on no more than two or three social networks. I recommend two. You can choose from Facebook, Twitter,  LinkedIN, and Youtube.
  • Download Twitter and Facebook on your smart-phone (I assume you have a smart-phone. If not, get one pronto.)
  • Until you get into the habit of it, put down a recurring event on your calendar to post at least once or twice a day on Twitter and Facebook.
  • Make your posts count. It’s ok to announce “I’m at Starbucks” of course. But what’s the value of it? Why not post “Going to Starbucks to meet a prospective client” or “Getting coffee to wake me up before I get to work, anyone else feel like I do” is so much more interactive and enables engagement from others.
  • Create Google alerts for news items that are interesting and relevant to your business. Post those with a comment and you benefit by sharing ready-to-use content with others.
  • If sharing photos and videos, use the many tools that are available to do this sharing across multiple platforms through one single post.
  • Stay connected regularly through smart-phones to maintain the momentum. Out of sight IS out of mind when it comes to online marketing.

Social networking is here to stay. Sooner or later, you’ll have to get familiar and become engaged online. But it doesn’t have to be at the expense of family and business.  Leverage smart-phones, apps, and other tools to remain connected without sacrificing too much of your family time. Hire experts to do your marketing so that you aren't spending your time tweeting and Facebooking when you should be spending it on business development and growth.

Social Media Blog: The Information Superhighway that Rivals the Billboards on the Freeway!

We'd all be on billboards seen on the major freeways in our town!

Yes, we would. If we could afford it that is.

Most of us smaller businesses can only dream of being on those big, beautiful billboards being visible to the millions of people driving down the major freeway. We all want everyone to know what we do, who we are, what we sell. Right?

But wait! There's another freeway known as the information superhighway or the Internet as we call it. It offers you Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social sites to make sure that you get an even better reach than that billboard you so covet.
 
Today’s online business world is all about creating a buzz around your brand and getting better connected with prospects and customers. By appealing to their interests and interacting with them, your company has a much greater chance of driving prospects to your site.

Stop casting a wide net of spam and advertisements that rarely provide the necessary Return on Investment (ROI). Use tools like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to shorten your sales cycle, build credibility, and convey what your customers want to hear. With just one 140 character tweet or with just one Facebook post, you can reach millions. Billboards on the other hand can only be seen by the few thousand who drive up and down that area each day.

Social media is here to stay. You can hide from it for a while, but you can't run from it forever. And if you haven't checked lately, check what your competition is doing online. If they've already leap-frogged you, there's your first worry. If they haven't, there's your first step. Call us either way and we'll make sure you stay abreast and get ahead of your competition!

It's time to get social. It's time to go gangbusters online. What are you waiting for again?

Social Media Marketing Blog: Is a Website a Cost or an Investment?

Small business owners are often faced with a number costs necessary to run their business. If these costs are not managed properly, the business and the owner(s) can be bankrupt before the business really gets off the ground. The biggest advantage a small business owner can have is an investment in a website to promote their product or service.

Reach Local or Global Customers
A quality website is the way to showcase your products and services. Regardless of whether your customers are local or global, your website is the best way to reach them. A well-created, aesthetically appealing, and functional website is especially important for small businesses because it is the most cost-effective marketing tool available to them.

Credibility and Visibility
Small businesses can maximize their business visibility with a comprehensive Internet strategy. Even if your services aren’t bought online, customers use the Internet to research what they are interested in buying. Regardless of the type of business you are in, your customers are researching and looking for you.

A well-designed and navigation-friendly website can also enhance your credibility. Customers can review testimonials, company information and your product or services portfolio to make an informed decision.

Brand awareness
By leveraging social networks like Facebook and Twitter, a company can gain brand awareness. Brand awareness results in more credibility for your company and will eventually drive leads and customers to you. By interacting with prospects with buy soundcloud plays agency and customers on social networks, you will build relationships that will also enhance your brand awareness.

When prospects tell me that they can’t “afford a website” or “can’t afford monthly marketing”, I wonder at their seriousness about being in business. Let’s face it. Digital (Internet) marketing is here to stay. You may hide but you can’t run from it. If you aren’t on social networks or marketing your website on search engines, how do you expect to remain viable? Look around you and check out your competitors online. Do they have a leg on you in terms of online visibility? If they don’t, that’s all the more reason to get online and leap-frog them by carving out your place in the big, competitive web world. If they do, what are you waiting for? You should’ve been online yesterday!

A website is an investment. Website marketing is “protecting your investment” and “growing your business”.

 

Is the Youngest Person in Your Office really Qualified to be Your Social Media Manager?

It's quite funny how business expertise is no longer a "selling-point". No one thinks what I do is an expertise or rather they think what I do is great but it's too expensive for them cause what I do, their office manager can do for a lower, cheaper price.

I met with a prospect last week, who went on and on about wanting to "raise the bar" and about how "he was miles ahead of his competition with his ideas and awareness about marketing" and how he really wanted my company to help grow his brand.

Today, when I called him to follow-up on the proposal I sent him, the one-sided conversation went like this:

  • Well, do I need that many hours? (BTW, we proposed a campaign for SEO, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Email Marketing for under $2 K per month)
  • My admin can do the FB posts because she has time during the day to post company stuff
  • I already have a LinkedIn account and I get all these connection requests which I can add myself.
  • We have a really sharp young lady in our office, she's only 23 and she's a recent graduate in finance. I bet I can have her manage our Facebook and Twitter, you know if the admin can't.

Long and short of it was that he had convinced himself that he didn't need me.  I could barely keep my laughter from spilling but I didn't say another word. I  just told thanked him for the opportunity to provide a quote and told him that perhaps we can be "plan B" in case he needs help. And then I hung up and laughed my head off.

Ok, so he really thinks a combination of his admin + 23 year old fresh-out-of-school employee + himself makes for a winning "marketing" team!

So here's my question to you all.

Who are you fooling Mr/Ms business owner if you think that "marketing" is something ANYONE can do?

Nothing against 23 year olds but do you think that "being younger" means being 'social marketing" savvy? And does the admin who has free time on her hand really know what to say on Facebook to "Drive interest/interaction" to your website? And do you really think that "adding connections" on LinkedIn is "social networking"??

For sure hire a 23 year old to be your marketing manager, IF:

  • the 23 year old is trained my someone like me (marketing expert)
  • the 23 year old is a "MARKETING" major and/or "has the marketing DNA",
  • the 23 year old is experienced in marketing, communications and is going to be "TRAINED" to be a marketing manager

Otherwise, think about this further and know that "age" is not the reason to hire or not hire someone. Expertise/ training/expertise/aptitude are MORE important than age.

Bottom-line: Just cause you know a 23 year old who can talk the Facebook/Twitter "lingo", doesn't mean the 23 year old is a "marketing expert"

Online Marketing Blog: Reputation Management

Marketing products and services online requires you to know how to connect with the target market. You need to employ strategies and tactics in order to survive. There are several ways to get your business known online. These involve development of your image and maintaining a good relationship with your customers. For any business, however, guarding that relationship is equally important.
 
Reputation management is all about having and maintaining a good name in the internet. Your reputation is of utmost importance. When you have a good reputation, your customers will trust you and your products. It will also attract other potential customers to you. It is unavoidable that false claims from competitors or situations with dissatisfied customers can lead to negativity surrounding your brand. This can lead to loss of business if your reputation is not managed proactively.
 
Reputation management means online brand management. Reputation management doesn’t just happen. It requires proactive tracking and monitoring of your name, your company’s name, and even tongue-in-cheek comments about your brand that may not necessarily be negative but also not be complimentary.
 
So how can you go about doing this?

Take preventive measures to protect you brand. If you see a negative comment about something related to your company, company’s products or services, or its employees, take proactive action by contacting the source. If you are unable to reach the source or the source is anonymous, post a response offering to speak with the source and offering an explanation or resolution plan.
 
Viewers or customers can be easily influenced by what they read about you no matter how true or false. So it is very valuable that you keep your response professional. Even if the accusations had validity, you should apologize and handle the feedback in a way that demonstrates your professionalism. Gracefully do offer a refund or replacement or a resolution that can make the source of the complainer satisfied with the resolution. Do not retaliate by angrily responding to the bad comments. Use the negative reviews as a means for you to improve and innovate in order to satisfy customers.
 
Not going online or networking online because you are afraid of negative consequences or of dissatisfied customers is not really a choice. It’s like saying, “if I don’t hear what my customers are saying, I won’t have a problem”. But that’s not how it works. First of all read the newest preview of Water Damage SEO and check some statistics.
 
Customers are going to complain even if you have done nothing wrong because of how they personally felt with you, your company, or your products/services. Perception is reality in many cases and so even if they perceive that you have a quality or brand issue, they will share their dissatisfaction with all who will listen.
 
Proactively identifying and resolving each individual situation to manage your brand should be your number one priority. Taking the complaints to heart and making changes within your company or product or service line should be the second number one priority.
 
Leveraging social networking websites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn to share positive changes, testimonials from satisfied customers, successful resolutions from past dissatisfied customers, are all ways to manage your brand and enhance it slowly but surely.
  
So!
 
Don’t avoid or underestimate the need to manage your reputation online. It is critical that you don’t just stop at brand management by enhancing your brand with positive messaging. It is even more important to first proactively fix your reputation which may have already been compromised due to a past situation or a past customer.
 
Contact us today to learn about our online marketing solutions including reputation management. Visit: http://www.jenesysgroup.com/ to contact us today!

Online Marketing Blog: Internship Opportunity in Michigan

 

If you’ve got the
inclination,
we’ve got the willingness to teach!
 

The Opportunity
Gain experience for a position in digital marketing
 

The What
Learn about website management, social network management, search engine optimization. Learn new skills and gain experience in digital marketing.

 

The Skill Thingi
Desire to learn
Willingness to explore new areas
Ability to work autonomously


The Responsibility/Commitment

Must commit to a minimum of 20 hours a week
Must agree to a minimum three month internship


Compensation

Receive a stipend for expenses

Gain a great reference if you show capability
Be eligible to get  hired as a future JG employee
 
  This is an UNPAID internship opportunity.

Interested? Call 248-470-6299 or Contact Us


Search Engine Optimization Blog: Why Should I Care About FaceBook, Twitter, or Whatever?

For some business owners, technology is passing them by as they are stuck in marketing meetings, revenue reviews, or whatever other daily to do's of business that ails them.  Or business owners are still waiting and watching to see how new media or digital media will affect them.

Businesses that don't get it, are going to get left behind in the dust. 

Why  you ask?

Cause social media marketing is one of the most cost-effective marketing techniques of the new age. Digital marketing or social media marketing can provide global reach (or local if that's all you need), visibility, and brand awareness, which can catapult your company to new heights, if it is used properly. The quick tidbits posted on twitter hourly or daily and the Facebook posts positioning your brand can benefit your company substantially. Leveraging LinkedIn to connect with movers and shakers and decision makers can help grow your sales pipeline.

Business owners must understand the advantage that marketing on these social networks can bring their company. Not only are the media free to use, their daily usage can bring recognition, visibility and traffic to their company's website.

 
Business owners struggling to figure this out, beware!
  
Don't go to your girlfriend's niece because she understands it better than you. Using these services personally and professionally are two totally different things. Marketing your company poorly on a social networking site will get you recognized too, however not in a good way..I might add. 
 
Knowing how to find the right company to market your website to social networks is important and essential in developing your brand and getting visibility for your company. Millions of people are on these social networks and they're talking about their likes and dislikes and their recommendations……you simply need to tap into these conversations to see what you can do to meet the needs of people seeking your products and services.

Don't get left behind in the dust, the dust of your competition speeding by you that is. Leverage new media, combine it with traditional media techniques, and see how your company's visibility grows online!

Search Engine Optimization Blog: What You Say Online, Stays Online!

Baring all in public is becoming more and more prevalent what with Facebook, Twitter, and other tools being accessible from everywhere including mobile phones and wifi connections that are freely and readily available.
 
Makes you wonder if anyone cares about online privacy anymore, doesn't it? Well, it's important, so here goes:
 
Remember, if you say it online, it's public!
  
You think it's hidden behind your privacy settings. But know that websites get hacked into and your privately shared information can become publicly visible. An agreement between Twitter and the search engines means that tweets are visible in search engine results. And copying and pasting a screen shot for the world to see, by a fictional friend whom you've never met, is a piece of cake. So if it is online, it can just as easily be featured on the front page of the NY Times. 
 
The Internet doesn't forget.
 
Yep, it is permanent. You may not realize how what you say today will affect you in the future. But fast forward in your mind 20 years from today and think how you’ll feel if you read something that you posted today. So before you post anything, think if your tweet or Facebook post could potentially cause embarrassment for you or your loved one in the future.
 
What you say has consequences for others too.

We've read news stories about cyber bullying causing suicides and harassment or potential lawsuits cropping up because someone said something that could harm another.  So think about that before you post how terrible your experience with xyz restaurant was. Or think of the potential for getting sued if you malign someone online. Last but not the least, think about the consequence of you or your loved one getting fired or sued because you said something in the "heat of the moment".