Reasons Your Small Business Should Invest Time in Twitter

????????????????????????????????????????Till a few decades ago, an ad in the local business directory was regarded an adequate business promotion strategy, but the same cannot be said of today. The explosion of the internet has made newspaper and television advertisements a thing of the past. Media marketing solutions such as social networking, surveys, online videos, email marketing and mobile phone marketing are the new trends in business promotion. They are used by mammoth corporations and small businesses alike.

Of all the solutions listed above, social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and LinkedIn are the most widely used. While Facebook is the indisputable leader, Twitter is not far behind. It has an equal potential to drive your business however; the main problem is a vast majority of business owners are not aware of how they can use this network to their advantage. Below, learn why your small business should invest time in Twitter.

  1. The Micro-Blogging Feature: Twitter is a blogging site with a difference. The distinguishing feature, also its plus point, is its 140-character limit. The word limit pushes one to create short yet straightforward, informative and creative content. Readers, mainly customers looking for product information, appreciate such a format. To add, it proves a successful communication strategy given our declining attention spans.

  2. The Ability To Target A Wider Audience: With over 200 million active users, “Twitterverse” is an incredible network of connections. Besides, it is expanding rapidly as large numbers subscribe to the service daily. As a result, it helps you reach out to a wider audience. You can also sync your email account or phone book and import contacts.

  3. An Opportunity to Collect Quality Leads: Twitter enables a firm or corporation to build quality leads as it doesn’t involve a search of random people but leads who are genuinely interested in a particular industry. It enables a small business to get quality followers, those who influence their target market.

  4. Adjust Security Settings: You can adjust Privacy settings on Twitter. Tweets are made visible to all members on your friend’s list. However, the direct message option allows to you send a private message without making it visible to all.

  5. Build Credibility and Brand Loyalty: In the online marketplace, it is difficult to trust because most of the time we are dealing with preprogrammed systems. Bigger business houses have capital to invest in trust-building measures, but small businesses are deprived of these privileges.

Twitter is a great platform to help build relationships with your customers. Though the space is restricted, you can share links to videos, presentations, articles and blog posts that showcase your business to the world. Responses and re-tweets open lines of communication for real time conversation and customer service such as customer queries and resolving issues in a timely manner. Also, It gives your business a human feel. When a follower re-tweets a post, it is as though he or she is endorsing your product or service creating word of mouth marketing. One can also use it as a medium to update customers and to disseminate important news about your small business. Is your small business investing time in Twitter?

 

 

Benefits of Using Social Media To Communicate With Your Customers

social-media-communicatinoAs the social media trend continues to grow, it has become apparent that social media presents a unique opportunity for small businesses to connect with their client base on a grassroots level and in a cost-effective manner. Though it may be difficult to justify taking time out of running a business to communicate with customers over various social media outlets, in reality this time expenditure shouldn’t feel trivial. Purposeful social media in business allows for a community to be built around a business’ concept or product, which is something marketers always strive for.

How Social Media Builds a Community

Social media is an excellent tool for a small business because it allows the business to actually connect with the audience and inspire a conversation. When social media is done right, it is engaging. It creates a dialogue among owners and potential clients, and it can stir interest in a product. Through back and forth dialogue between a business and their clients, a community is fostered where you can get a feel for the types of people that are interested in what your business offers. Basically, social media allows your target demographic to be friends with you and converse with you at the same time.

Social Media As A Tool For Customer Service

The social media platform also has the very immediate possibility of being an extension of your customer service offerings. In addition to having a customer service hotline or inbox, social media is a way to monitor the conversation about your product or service online and be a part of it. Using social media, it is possible for a business to offer solutions and tips in real time and in public. In effect, social media gives a small business the chance to host the conversation about themselves, which gives a business the power to interject at any moment and correct problems as they occur.

Social Media is Worth Your Time

Though small businesses often have a hard time justifying the time expenditure that social media requires it has nonetheless become an extremely important tool for business and should be used to its full potential. It helps small companies build a community that previously would have taken the resources of professional marketers and plenty of money to build. Companies can now build a community with the same power almost organically. Furthermore, it has the potential to enhance your business by giving you the opportunity to address customer service issues in real time and in public.

Social media is still growing and there is no sign that the trend is coming to an end any time soon. Small businesses should decide how they want to engage with customers on different social media sites and begin to do so. At this point, the drawbacks of not joining social media sites are too hefty to ignore, and the potential involved with a well-run social media presence is too great an opportunity to pass up for your small business.

Savvy Social Tip: Social Media Bloopers – Smile and Move On by @ElizabethTraub

Savvy Social TipSometimes it’s a mis-hit of a key, a pinky out of control on your smart phone, or you simply do not get or understand the grammatical context of what you are about to tweet, so you implement your 3rd grade rules of reason.

Major brands get center stream when their brand managers tweet something that does not resonate well with the tweeting public. A ‘typo” gets sneers and geers. How do we handle this? How do we carry forward when this happens?

“We all have bloopers in Social Media. Just smile and move on.”

There use to be a well esteemed career called “writer”. The “writer” was well versed, and knew all the grammatical placement of written language. Creative and engaging their readers on their way to being a best seller. Those fortunate enough to be published had editors. Today, we are all called to be writers in our own right. Big companies hire writers and small companies struggle to get their writing refined. That interior designer, business consultant in me now has to take what I want to communicate in this social space and become a writer.

Sometimes I say bloopers and sometimes I tweet bloopers. For the most part, I can catch my words before I push send. Sometimes that thought runs faster than my fingers can keep up and it comes out all wrong. I am not going to stress over the occasional blooper.

How can we help others? I have privately messaged those whom I know when I see something I know they did not intend. I have also received those messages and could go back and correct my mistakes. We are human, subject to human error, and as we all continue to learn and grow, we can extend grace to the bloopers we see streaming. And if you do see one, be sure to share this Savvy Social Tip.
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Elizabeth Traub: Chatty, wife, mom of 5, Brand Strategist, Social Producer, Marketing Direction. #SavvySocialTip

Elizabeth partners with your company as a brand and marketing strategist.  She will help direct  your project through to the next stages of development specializing in Social Marketing Producing. Elizabeth can help build, train and teach your marketing team in everything New & Social in Media platforms. Taking your offline marketing efforts and moving them online. Elizabeth can work with your existing Marketing team, or help you build your team. Elizabeth is a fantastic, engaging, and teaching public speaker. Having spoken to crowds in the 100?s down to an audience of 10. She deliveries her story of success, failures, and hardships. Her story of being a full time present mom, while working full-time. She is inspirational and encouraging with her measures of success starting with right where a person is at and where they want to go. “Your Dreams & Passions, My Experience & Help. FOUNDER of #SavvySocialTip

Stay In Touch with Elizabeth:

Follow Elizabeth on Twitter @ElizabethTraub Three things she does in real time now doing online: Hung Out To Buy www.hungouttobuy.com Elizabeth Traub Consulting & Design www.elizabethtraub.com Girlfriends Hub www.girlfriendshub.com

Social Media: Lost at Sea by @AceConcierge

fishAs you wade through the waters of your online universe, kicking a few stones and jumping the waves, you may find yourself wondering what the heck are you doing and how should you do “it.” Flopping like a fish out of water is not what you imagined when you began this digital journey to help build your business and establish a piece of the market share. Oh it all sounded so easy!

Your entrepreneurial spirit got you this far so it’s not time to throw in the towel but instead grab a life vest and paddle like hell; with a plan of course.

“Beginners at social media don’t have an editorial calendar, and they don’t measure results—they simply post when they have time. You have to keep feeding the beast. Otherwise, it’s worse than doing nothing.”  Beth Kanter

Social media success is developed on a solid foundation comprised of several components which help to build your credibility, following, loyalty and thought leadership. Each piece is a vital element toward growing your audience and facilitating a return on your investment. While no two accounts are alike, the features below help to shape your position in the digital environment.

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Keep in mind that results come from fostering and enriching your online connections within your community via relevant content and conversations. Put down the megaphone and stop broadcasting. Social media is a two-way dialog just like any other relationship.

“Curating and sharing something meaningful, driving participation — that’s where we need to go. Once we stopped shouting and started creating targeted, meaningful communication, we saw a 400% increase in engagement.” Andrew Bowins

Branding: Creating a cohesive brand image is an important powerful starting point. Make sure your profiles, bios and logo are consistent and clearly represent you and your brand. You don’t want to confuse your audience with mixed messages.

Engagement: Don’t set it and forget it. Automate what you must, some of the routine tasks but MAKE time to personally engage with your network. People love people – meet and greet your community. Show genuine interest and respond to all comments and messages.

Content: Content marketing is still the mainstay. Your posts should be speaking to your audience, solving pain points, educating, inspiring and supporting your mission/vision (but not soapbox selling). If you are dull and boring, the same old blah, blah, people won’t stick around. Know and understand your followers and their needs. Provide value! Spice it up.

Relationship building: All business starts with a relationship marketing. I don’t care who you are or what you sell, if you aren’t nurturing your relationships, you won’t have the opportunity to build trust, credibility and authority; which all come into play for the buying decision. Authenticity wins.

Consistency: If you build it they will come. Not! Just because you have a few profiles and post sporadically does not mean you entice people to knock down your doors, hoping to establish a working partnership of some kind. Post consistently. Have a strategy that is functional, practical and feasible. Don’t start out with 4 posts one week, skip a few weeks and then publish just 2. You won’t gain a loyal audience if you are all over the calendar with your content schedule.

Frequency: Decide on how many times per day you are going to post and stick with it. You need to strike a balance between being informative and being annoying. Too many posts can be overkill. There are plenty of articles suggesting times/frequency. They can be used as helpful guidelines but it really comes down to what is transpiring on your social networks. Post. Measure. Tweak.

Relevancy: Is your content relevant to your industry, brand and buyer personas? If you are just publishing content that has nothing to do with your brand or isn’t applicable to the needs of your target market then why are you posting it? Think about the most pressing questions you’ve been asked and write a post about each one. What problems do you solve? How do you or your services makes someone’s life better? Easier?

Sharing: It really is caring. Share the content of your colleagues, industry influencers, clients; anyone who has an impact on your life or business and you deem their posts as valuable to your network. You are able to give back and “share the love” as well as distribute educational/informative content. Your own posts should take a backseat to your community.

Is there more to social media marketing than this? Hell yes!  This is just the bare bones to chart your course toward greater visibility, community ties and building your online reputation.

Educate yourself: Read. Research. Test. Measure.

Remember the adage: Be social. Don’t do social. While this may seem like a gagging overused cliché, it holds merit. When working with people, whether online or off, it is always comes back to one simple premise: the human touch.

Consider your current strategy and what changes you can implement today for better results and stronger relationships. What changes are you ready to make?

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ace

Suzie Kummins-Poirier, a.k.a @aceconcierge, is a virtual assistant working
with entrepreneurs and business people who care to focus on their core
genius by delegating the much-needed but time-consuming everyday tasks in
managing their business.  With 30 years of experience as a key support for
her clients, her top priority has always been to facilitate the most
effective strategies for time management, delegation and business processes,
creating the realization that even though her clients CAN do it all, it
doesn’t mean they should. She builds a continually up-to-date tool-set that
eliminates typical routine obstacles for the entrepreneurs who contract her.
This growing tool-set is about aiding the client in growing their business
and removing the straps that bind them to everyday tasks/projects and
tugging them away from emphasis on their daily business operations.



Twitter: https://twitter.com/aceconcierge

Ace Concierge: http://aceconcierge.net/blog/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AceConcierge

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/aceconcierge/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+SuzieKumminsPoirier/posts

 

 

Hiring a Social Media Agency – Are You Asking the Right Questions?

Untitled design (9)“Why hire a social media consultant if I can do the job myself?” Most businesses have asked this question at least once because they tend to assume that social media starts and ends at having a Facebook fan page or a Twitter account. Wrong! Friends, believe me, it does not get the job done. Using social media for your business goes beyond that and it is definitely one of the reasons you should consider hiring an agency that gets successful results.

As a small business you’re on a stringent budget already; therefore, every time you bet your cash on something you want to make sure you get the best value for your money. There are some key questions you should ask when hiring a social media marketing agency; I have listed them below. Check and see if your list matches the one I have compiled.

1. Is the agency an active user of social media?

This is one of the most important and critical questions to ask. Is the agency or consultant actually an ACTIVE participant in Social Media? Do your homework! Are they on Twitter? If so, are they consistently tweeting, engaging and is the content relevant? Do they have a Facebook business page with engaging content on it and are they replying to comments received in a timely manner? If they are not listening to their audience, interacting and having a conversation, how can you expect them to lead you to success if they don’t practice what they preach?

2. How well does the agency understand your business?

Given that the agency will be involved in promoting your business to millions of people, it’s safe to say they should be clear about the nature of your business and goals. They should know your business model, your product, the method of production and the solution it provides. The agency must be willing to learn about your business rather than simply bragging about their services.

3. How well do they handle content creation?

Content is the most important piece of your strategy and should be thoroughly examined before choosing a firm. Social media platforms expect you to express messages in a limited number of words so they must be able to get creative while getting the point across. The reality is, people prefer to read brief messages, those they can take in at a glance. Successful marketing programs are built around excellent content. Hence, why one should ask how the agency handles content creation.

The agency should have a proven track record in building appropriate content for diverse platforms. If you come across one who refuses, it would be better to strike them off your list because without good content your business is missing out on a lot. A true professional creates and uses informative, creative and engaging content to spread word about your business in the online marketplace. The only way you can come to know how they work is by asking to see samples of their work.

4. Is the agency up to date on current trends?

This is a very important concern because the social media landscape is continuously changing. What was relatively unknown yesterday has become the new trend today. Therefore, it’s necessary that the agency and its employees keep abreast of the latest trends in social media marketing so that they can help your business capitalize and take advantage of new opportunities.

5. Does the agency have a background in marketing?

The primary objective of hiring a social media agency is marketing, promotion, and sales. The agency should obviously possess knowledge about social media marketing, but ideally they need to understand marketing more holistically. In today’s marketplace, social media is only one piece to the puzzle and if your agency doesn’t understand other marketing channels and how social media integrates with them, well, you’re up the creek without a paddle. Don’t be afraid to ask what made them choose social media marketing as their career. Get to know them.

6. How does the agency measure success – quality or quantity?

Figures are attractive because they objectify results, but numbers in social media marketing can be deceptive. 20,000 followers is a great audience for your business, yet it won’t make a difference if there is no conversion. You should work with a consultant or agency who promises to give deliver relevant, targeted and real followers or fans but beware of those that promise huge numbers in a short amount of time unless they are using ads and campaigns effectively. Why do I mention real? Because, sadly many agencies will purchase fake followers, etc to enhance their presence and in reality it does nothing for you. It does not matter if it is a small group initially, what matters is that they are interested in your business. Do not get swayed by big figures alone. Also, watch out for agencies that use black-hat techniques to get hordes of traffic to your site. This is empty traffic that won’t convert. We call it vanity metrics. They look good but have no real value.

7. Who is going to be our voice?

To put this in simple terms, it implies the person who is going to be in-charge of marketing your business on social media platforms. Is it the owner of a company, an employee or an apprentice? Social media marketing is about being tech savvy, but it also requires some experience. A graduate fresh out of college will not offer the same support as seasoned internet marketers. The person-in-charge should also be a full-time team member of the agency so you can request to speak to the person handling your account as needed.

8. Is it possible to track performance using a program?

The agency should provide you with reports at regular intervals so you can track performance. This is the only way you can track progress and hold them accountable. Most agencies offer monthly reports; be specific about how you define success so the reports can be customized to fit your needs and goals. Ask for a sample report as well as questions such as, how do you measure the effectiveness of each channel and what methods will you use to measure success?

9. How do they manage a crisis?

A bad comment can be damaging to your businesses image because social media sites are viral mediums. A message spreads within minutes. You should inquire about how the agency plans to handle such situations and expect them to have best practices established for such occurrences.

Social media has an immense potential and can take your business to new heights. When choosing an agency, do your homework and choose wisely to help your small business rise to the top! When you ask the right questions, you make the right decisions. Having the answers allows you to weed out the “fluff” and make sure that the agency understands your business and how their strategy aligns to your business goals.

What questions would you add for a business to ask when looking to hire a Social Media Agency?

 

 

 

 

Savvy Social Tip: Embrace, Forgive and Improve by @ElizabethTraub

Savvy Social TipLong before there was Social Media, my job required me to be very social. Etiquette at cocktail parties, etiquette around the boardroom, etiquette walking the halls of companies I worked with, even etiquette when grabbing a cup of coffee on the run. It’s important to be keeping myself in check as a professional at all times, always representing myself well and those companies I work with in the same manner. I require that of myself and have since learned that what I have done in real time is parallel to who I am online.

It’s important to understand how to navigate Social Media, especially if you are brand new and your offline job never required you to face the public daily.  As I began navigating myself in Social Media, I learned quickly that it came naturally for me. Others began asking me questions, simple questions, and I soon learned what seemed simple to me was quite complex for one just stepping into Social Media. Thus, I developed Savvy Social Tips in an effort to offer a bit of direction for those looking in.

Here is this week’s tip to help direct you in your social experience.

“Embracing yourself, forgiving yourself, improving yourself all works together.” #SavvySocialTip

Being social requires a bit of confidence. If you do not come from this place of confidence naturally, it’s important to grow into this space. I speak publically at conferences, I lead teams and direct. I have this innate confidence that had me singing in a school talent show at the age of 10. Not everyone is wired this way, yet being present in Social Media requires that. Thus I say, that as you embrace who you are in this space, know you are not going to get it right every time and must forgive yourself. In less than 140 characters, I submit that you forgive yourself and keep moving forward, because if you embrace, forgive and move forward, you will improve.

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elizabethElizabeth Traub has spent the past 20 years working as a consultant with business start ups, existing businesses as well as mentoring & coaching both men & women to live in the design of their dreams and passions. She is strategic with ideas that are off the charts. Elizabeth has worked with those who have their dreams and passions scribbled on a napkin through the steps of getting started. This happens with strategics, goal planning, marketing, and training, product design and development, and working to develop Social Media presence and strategies. Elizabeth loves working in platforms in the entertainment industry as well as investor, relations, business development, branding, strategic, retail, website design and development. She continues to work with industry leaders in building of products and services.

Stay In Touch with Elizabeth:

Follow Elizabeth on Twitter @ElizabethTraub
Three things she does in real time now doing online:
Hung Out To Buy www.hungouttobuy.com
Elizabeth Traub Consulting & Design www.elizabethtraub.com
Girlfriends Hub www.girlfriendshub.com

5 Ways To Grow A Brand’s Presence with Video on Social Media

twitter-video

As a brand, it is important we encompass a positive image and unique presence on Social Media to grow and be of value to others. If your brand is new or having issues with doing so, I am here to share information on how your brand can make that happen.

When promoting a positive image and unique presence, a brand needs to keep in mind it’s about connecting with the audience and customers. By doing so, the brand creates a path for customers to build relationships, spread the word and keeps them coming back for more.  One way this is done is to put a face behind who your customers and audience speak and do service with on Social Media. As a consumer on Social Media , this is something I and many others look for to get a better feel and understanding of who we are conversing with but what some look for doesn’t stop there.

The key to keeping the positive image and presence is to be authentic, original and unique in doing so. This is done by enhancing it through the use of video which takes it above and beyond the profile face pictures you find on other brands websites, blogs and Social Media networks. By using video, a brand is giving their audience and consumers a look from the outside in and further deepening the connection. There are several ways to make this happen.

  • Create a short video with enthusiasm from each team member within the brand. No one likes, “Just another boring video” so it’s important to create it with zazz and make it interesting and fun. In this video, state your name, what your position is, and what makes your position fun and enjoyable.
  • Give your audience and consumers a look into the daily life by showing them around your companies work environment in a different video. Put them in your shoes. After all, they are your brand and fuel your success and growth.
  • Create an additional personal video of the person responsible for managing the Twitter account. Basically, the person tweeting and engaging. If more than one individual tweets from the account, make sure each one has a personal video. Tweet the video link at the start of each day or when the account is changing users. Include in the video the person’s name, a relevant greeting and the question, “Is there anything that I can help you with today?”
  • Thank your consumers and audience weekly in a video. Give a shout out to people on Twitter that follow you, people that have liked your brand page on Facebook. Make it personal, show gratitude and let them know they are never forgotten.
  • Post all videos on the brands YouTube account, landing page on Facebook  and Twitter as I discussed above. As far as the team video, post it on the brand’s website as a welcome.

By using video, the brand is raising their profile, promoting a positive image and enhancing brand value for others. This connects the brand with their customers and audience in a unique way and shows them the brand has took the time to create it for them. Basically saying, we care about and value our audience and consumers. I understand this might be time consuming but by investing in this time it is sure to create a remarkable ROI as many customers are looking for this type of aspect in a brand and sharing what the brand is doing.

So is your brand ready to enhance their image and presence by being unique, authentic and make a lasting impression through the use of video?

 

A Small Budget for Social Media Marketing

social media marketing budgetYou’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again: your business needs to be actively engaged on social media if you want to thrive in today’s marketplace. That’s great for major corporations with big budgets and plenty of resources, but what do you do if you’re a small business with limited resources and limited time? The good news about social media marketing is that you can achieve a lot without spending too much. But there are also many pitfalls you can fall into that will end up costing you valuable time and money if you’re not careful.

Tools You Can Use For Free

One of the major advantages of social media marketing is that most of the tools are free to use. Anyone can have a Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or Google+ account provided they have an email address. There are also social media management tools like HootSuite that provide a basic package for free or a premium package for a low monthly fee. This means that anyone can get into the social media game for next to nothing.

Don’t Waste Your Time

The main problem with social media, however, is not the cost of the tools, but the time it takes to use them. This is where your business will have to seriously consider if certain social networks are worth being a part of or not. Take Twitter, for example. If you don’t have the time to tweet multiple times a day, then Twitter might not be for you. Social media users expect to see a fresh flow of content that is being continually updated, and failing to provide them with that can have a negative impact on your brand.

Can You Afford to Hire a Contractor?

Many businesses with limited resources will hire independent contractors to handle all of their social media for them. This is a great way to ensure that you have an effective social media presence even if you don’t have the resources to handle it yourself. But when hiring contractors, you can easily end up spending upwards of $10,000 a month to keep up a blog, a Twitter account, a YouTube account, a Facebook account, and more. Is this really something that your business can afford?

Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin

Instead of trying to keep up a dozen different social media accounts when you don’t really have the time or the budget to do so, it may be best to figure out which areas you want to focus on and do those well. Consider which demographics you want to reach. Find out which social media tools they use most and do an awesome job of representing your brand across those platforms.

Social media marketing can be fun and it can be effective, but if you’re doing it wrong it can also be a colossal waste of time. And as with many other areas of marketing, going after a niche market means that you can often see a higher return coming from a smaller investment.

8 Steps to Building a Perfect Ecommerce Site

Tips-for-E-Commerce-Website-DevelopmentIf you wish to succeed at selling through your ecommerce site, you need to begin on a firm footing. You’ve got a ton of competition out there and price SHOULD NOT be your only differentiator. If it is you’re leaving a lot of money on the table and missing out on massive amounts of customers. Presented here are the eight essential steps you need to take in order to build the perfect ecommerce website, maximize traffic, and drive more conversions.

  1. Plan your approach and base it on detailed information on standard best practices. This will allow you to not only get the execution right fast but will also give you ideas to introduce elements that can make your website get noticed.  Mapping out a plan based on essential requirements (products, images, shopping cart, SEO optimization) and features that you’d like to have (forum, affiliate program, auctions) will also allow you to stay focused on priorities.

  2. Choice of ecommerce platform and site template, or custom design, matters. If you plan to first test the waters, you’ll do just fine with WordPress. You can set up a fully functional ecommerce website using WordPress, there are plugins for data feed downloads, SEO, integrated shopping cart, different payment gateways, and much more. In fact, I only use WordPress because it’s so easy to use and flexible. For elaborate businesses, there are e-commerce platforms that you can compare for features and budget. Platforms include Shopify, Volusion, FoxyCart, Magento, Izzonet, and others.

  3. Incorporate SEO optimization techniques from the very beginning. These include doing the necessary keyword research to determine what your potential customers are searching for and then incorporating what you’ve learned into title tags and page copy as well as using canonical URLs, alt tags for images, considering site loading speed, implementing sitemaps, and 301 redirects where appropriate.

  4. Work on building a social media presence in order to reach out to prospects, build relationship and promote your business. Social media icons should be easily viewable on your ecommerce website. Look up other sites for examples of eye-catching icons and smart use of space. Use social logins to increase engagement rates, improve user experience, and enhance the ability for your customers to become brand advocates.

  5. Your ecommerce website design should allocate visibility to the different elements based on their importance. Product images and descriptions invariably get prime real estate. Drop-down menus, search, shopping cart, newsletter signup box, discount coupons, brand logo, payment system, special deals, etc all need to be prioritized and placement determined. Of these, most elements automatically select themselves for a position above the fold.

  6. A smooth single-page checkout with a hassle-free payment system creates a very favorable impression. Conversely, glitches in checking out such as the page refreshing and not going anywhere, a slow loading page, difference in amount billed as shown on the product page and payment page, etc can lead to abandoned shopping carts. The payment system should be configurable, scalable, work with different internationally accepted payment methods, and inspire trust.

  7. Mobile traffic is set to grow at an exponential rate.  Your ecommerce site should be optimized for mobile phone and load quickly. Logins and purchases should be easy and the layout should adapt to the smaller screens while maintaining a great user experience.

  8. Commerce, whether in the real world or online, has to be data driven. Analytics deliver a wealth of actionable metrics for you to study and take necessary action to refine content and process. With ecommerce, accurate and timely analytics is crucial so you can quickly and easily measure business metrics such as top referring sites, your best converting sources, most viewed products, flaws in your sales funnel, top performing keywords, etc. Understanding this info and having it organized in a way that allows you to make better decisions faster is your key to consistent improvement and a healthy bottom line.

If you’re just getting started be sure to select a cool brandable name that’s memorable and then work to implement the above-mentioned points to ensure that you hit the ground running. Some aspects, such as SEO, analytics, and social media, are an ongoing process. Keep at it, become a student of the game and you’ll definitely see progress and find willing buyers. This is a contact sport so get out there and start hustling!

How To Develop Personality For Your Brand

personality_1When we all meet someone the personality they entail says a lot about what kind of person they are. The same holds true for a brand. It is very important as a brand to have personality. The reason this is true is because when people are looking to connect with a brand they look for an aspect about the brand that makes them feel comfortable and want to build a relationship with. Basically, your brands personality is whats perceived by others meaning your audience and consumers.

When developing the personality of your brand ask yourself a couple questions that will aid you in developing the right one that will encompass a positive impact.

  • Who am I? What kind of results do I want to see?
  • Is my brand one that everyone wants to connect with or am I trying to target a specific audience?
  • Does my personality fit my brand identity and is it strong enough to make a lasting impression?
  • How do I want to be perceived by my customers and audience?
  • Does my personality define me?
  • If my brand were human what would be my characteristics?

Once you develop your brand personality, the marketing strategy aspect of your brand becomes somewhat easier to create. Make sure all departments of your brand are working together as a team and agree as a team to make this happen. I have seen many brands fail when trying to develop a personality because they fail to work as a team which leads to a lot of chaos, disagreement and disaster.

So sit down with all departments of your brand and ask each other, “Are we being perceived in a way that makes us successful?” During the meeting with all departments, be sure to develop a set of social media guidelines or principles to help guide employees when carrying out tasks and communicating “as the brand”. If your brand is not being perceived as being successful take into consideration what I have talked about and start developing the visual personification your brand deserves. After all, personality can say a thousand words about who we are as brand.