Internet Advertising Check List

Internet advertising is a complex business. Despite being able to set up and get running in minutes, there are are number of things that you really should have in place before you actually start spending money.

Here is a Check List of 5 of the most important things that you should be putting in place in and around your website BEFORE you start running advertising on the internet.

Google

 

  1. Highly targeted audience
  2. 2-5 key words or phrases that people actually search for
  3. Google Analytics set up on your website
  4. A unique webpage for your visitors to land on once they’ve clicked on your ad
  5. An automated method of catching some of the 99% of people who will click on your ad but not buy there and then

Facebook

  1. A niche market where you really understand the interests of your potential customers
  2. A great, high quality picture to capture attention
  3. Conversion Tracking set up on your website
  4. A unique webpage for your visitors to land on once they’ve clicked on your ad
  5. An automated method of catching some of the 99% of people who will click on your ad but not buy there and then

More on Google Advertising

On Google, people search for information and/ or products or services to buy.  Setting up your advertising campaign to attract those that are going to be buyers – either right away or in the near future is key to your success.

Once you’ve thought through that and know what people are searching on when they are looking for the products you sell, you need to ensure they have a smooth run through to your checkout.  Google Analytics helps us here.  We can see the points where our website is ‘leaking’ customers and fix those areas.

If you’re doing it yourself it can take a little bit of time to set up a Google campaign and get it running profitably.  But once it’s up and running, you can leave it running because there are new searchers every month.

More on Facebook Advertising

On Facebook, people are not looking for things to buy.  They’re socialising.  So, it’s really important that you understand what your potential customers would be interested in.  That way we can present them with an image that will capture their attention and make them read the copy.

Some would say that Facebook is an easier platform to advertise on but, because it’s social, you need to change your ads fairly regularly, otherwise people will get fed up of seeing them and either ignore them or worse.

You’ll notice that some of the points in the lists above are different.  That’s because people use Google and Facebook differently so the approach needs to be slightly different.

However, once you’ve persuaded visitors to click through to your website, much of what is needed to intrigue your customer and guide them through to the purchase is the same.

If you’d like a printable check list, click the button below.  It’s free, no strings attached – my gift to you!

Google and Facebook Advertising Check List

About the author:

Gayle Norbury, Google annd Facebook Marketing Expert

Having spent many years in large corporations, Gayle has spent the few last years studying Google and Facebook advertising and now helps make it work for small businesses.

‘British’ Sells

John Lewis has recently announced that it is launching a ‘Made in Britain’ campaign – actively looking for UK businesses that can supply it with goods.  According to the Daily Telegraph, in the past year ‘John Lewis’s UK supplier base has grown from 132 to 207 companies.

John Lewis is not alone. Sir Philip Green has said he will be giving more work to British businesses via Topshop. Bathrooms.com, DFS and Hornby are also moving towards purchasing from Britain.

Ian Monk of Bathrooms.com is quoted as saying that lead times had reduced from six months to six weeks by moving production to the UK and that partnering with firms in the UK had made product development ‘a lot faster and a lot less painful’.

Consumers are also looking for British goods. Winemaker, Chapel Down Wines, who are based in Kent have found that idiosyncratic English wines are becoming more popular.  According to the Daily Telegraph’s Business Club, the company has gone from selling 25,000 bottles of wine at £5.99 (retail price) to 250,000 bottles at £18.99.

So with that in mind, it’s worth looking at your own business to see how this trend could be used in your own marketing.  If your product is made in Britain, can you tell people about it? Is there a story you could tell? Also think about who to say it to…

  • your customers
  • your distributors
  • your partners

and where to say it

  • on your product
  • on your website
  • in your advertising
  • on your brochures and other literature
  • on your stationery

Why not go with the trend? Have a think about how ‘Made in Britain’ might help you to tell your story and help you sell more.

How ‘One’ Can Ruin Your Business

One is REALLY BAD In business. Just as no business should be reliant on just one customer for obvious reasons, using just one marketing media is also a bad strategy.

Yet many small business owners do just that.  Why?  Because, at first sight it seems to make sense. Many businesses use just their sales force or just local advertising.  They believe that if a sales generation method is working, there is no reason to change.

Here are four major problems that can cause havoc in a marketing plan based on ‘one’…..

Illness:  If you are the only person in your business, what happens if you’re ill – or have an accident?  Despite the cost and the difficulties of working with someone else at the beginning, planning for the unexpected should be in your business plan. It’s worth thinking about who might take over the essentials should the worst happen.

Increased Costs:  Your chosen media may hike its charges and no longer be cost effective.  Changes in the price of paper, inks and printing, pay per click could make it much more difficult to make money from your ads.

While an increase in cost may not mean you should stop using that media, it may affect how much you use it and your ROI.

Rules and Regulations:  If you rely solely on your website for leads, how did you fare when Google brought in its infamous Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird algorithm changes? S

ome internet reliant entrepreneurs lost as much as 96% traffic after the changes with a corresponding hit on revenue.  Not a good place to be if the SEO and the internet is your only source of leads!

Becoming Less Effective:   It can be that with regular use, customers become blind to your advertisements in a certain media.   Or that media can fall totally out of favour with a once enthusiastic audience.  One example is that in the early days of the internet, banner ads were touted as the one thing you ‘should’ be doing.  But people became ‘blind’ to banner ads and they fell from favour.  

That’s not to say that you shouldn’t be doing banner ads it’s just that times have moved on and the way things worked then was different to what’s working now.

The solution is to spread your marketing budget over a variety of different lead generation methods both on and off line. Not only will this ensure that you won’t have to worry about one of your income streams drying up, it can produce better results, over the long and short term.

A good plan is to copy larger companies which often have a similar campaign working over TV, radio, print and direct mail.  Now, although it’s highly likely you won’t have the million pound budget for this sort of massive campaign, you should be using your own marketing budget on a smaller scale but in a similar way, over several media.

The important thing is to set your business up to succeed by creating several lead generation sources. Using more that one method makes your whole business a lot more secure and future-proof.

5 Ways To Beat Your Competiton

Did you watch the Rugby World Cup in 2003 where Jonny Wilkinson kicked that winning drop goal?  Exciting, wasn’t it.  But that kick did not happen by chance.

As Sir Clive Woodward said when he was training the England Rugby Team to victory, you don’t have to be 100% better than your competition, you just have to be 10% better in the key performance indicators.  And translated into business that means – be better in the things your customers care about.

So, where do you start and what are the key things that matter most to your customers?  In no particular order, here are 5 of the elements that I have found make the biggest impact on customer retention:

1. Service

So, how can you make your service that bit better than your competitors?  If you have regular customers, I would recommend starting recording as much information as possible from each and every visit.  Then build in time so that all members of staff can refer to it before each appointment and update afterwards.

This is just one simple way to can make your service unique and appear to be much better that your competitors. There are many others. It would be worth having a brainstorming session with your staff/partner/friends to come up with other (with no or little cost) ideas. I’m sure you’ll surprise yourselves.

2. Reward regular customers

It doesn’t have to be a huge reward – just a simple means of thanking people for coming back regularly.

This might mean giving them a gift, a discount for another service or product or even a coffee while they are being served.

Be inventive and look for ways to delight your customers without it costing you anything at all.

3. Ask

Customers, particularly regular paying customers, welcome being asked for their opinion.  So, if you’re thinking of introducing a new product or service, try asking your customers what they think.  You might be surprised and it might save you some time, effort and money.

They may suggest alterations to your plan which would make it better or more useful for your customers.

They may even come up with some suggestions you would never have even considered!

Getting to know your customers better in this way will allow you to really target your marketing efforts which will inevitably result in them spending more with you over the longer term.

Time well spent!

4. Keep it New

One of the reasons people change suppliers is boredom – thinking they may be better off somewhere else.  To counter this and to keep your service personalised and fresh, try to do something new each month.  Some examples of ‘new’ are:

Changing your window/counter display

New format price list

New products or services

Offers

And when you’ve come up with something new, don’t forget to tell your customers about it.  Which brings us onto….

 5. Keep In Contact

There are many reasons why people stop using your product or service and it may seem like it’s out of your control.  But there are many effective things you can do to encourage people to come back.

Contacting them on a regular basis is a good way of keeping ‘You’ somewhere near the top of their mind.  It doesn’t always have to be a sales message; it could be information that would be relevant to them. The point is to have some method of contacting your customers in place. One of the fastest way of doing that is to start collecting numbers, email and physical addresses.

(By the way, if you keep records of your customers on your computer, it’s important to register with the Information Commissioners Office.  It’s not difficult but it is necessary if you’re in the UK.)

Every business should have a list of it’s customers and preferably its leads as well, does yours?

And to conclude…

So while you might not be training for the World Cup, it is worth implementing at least some of these suggestions.  The thing is to do it on a sustainable basis.  Plan how you can keep up with whatever you decide to implement before starting.

That way, your competitors won’t know what hit them!

Excellent News For UK Business!

At last, some good news for small business owners!

Wesleybarrel-sofa2

In these times of austerity, the good news is that larger companies and retailers are actively looking for British suppliers – which means great opportunities, not only for manufacturers but for all small businesses.

John Lewis has recently announced that it is launching a ‘Made in Britain’ campaign – searching for UK businesses that can supply it with goods.  According to the Daily Telegraph, in the past year alone John Lewis has added 75 British companies to it’s supplier base.

John Lewis is not alone. Sir Philip Green has said he will be giving more work to British businesses via Topshop. Bathrooms.com, DFS and Hornby are also moving towards purchasing from Britain.

Ian Monk of Bathrooms.com is quoted as saying that the benefits of buying in Britain had very positive implications.  Lead times reduced from six months to six weeks by moving production to the UK and that partnering with firms in the UK had made product development ‘a lot faster and a lot less painful’.

This repatriation of production is a fantastic opportunity for British manufacturers and one to be grasped with both hands.  But surprisingly, some businesses seem to have no appetite for for taking on a new way of working.   Retailers complain that British firms do not respond to inquiries, are unwilling to provide quotations and do not have (and are unwilling or unable to recruit) the skill set or staff required.

For those smart business owners that are willing to embrace marketing their wares to companies that have been purchasing from China, who are willing to be fast, flexible and cost effective, the business is there for the taking.

Consumer Marketing

Interestingly, consumers are also looking for British goods. Winemaker, Chapel Down Wines, based in Kent have found that idiosyncratic English wines are becoming more popular.  According to the Daily Telegraph’s Business Club, the company has gone from selling 25,000 bottles of wine at £5.99 (retail price) to 250,000 bottles at £18.99. (There is also a case here for understanding how to set your prices, methinks!)

Of course, the ‘Made in Britain’ phase could change in the future – if the strength of sterling changes and it’s once again cheaper to import.  But, as they say, the only constant is change. So, the sensible way forward is to embrace it so you don’t get left behind.

Just now, where there’s a definite movement towards more understanding of getting what you pay for, it’s time to go with the market and promote your business in a way that resonates with your customer base.

With that in mind, it’s worth looking at your own business to see how this trend could be used in your own marketing.  Even in non manufacturing companies, I can see the ‘Made in Britain’ could be used in promotion – all you need is vision and the desire to grow.

So, what about your business?  Can you see how your business could profit from this latest trend? Why not have a think about how ‘Made in Britain’ might help you to tell your story to potential customers and how you can use the changes going on right now, to sell more?

If you are unsure how to exploit this marketing opportunity for profit in your specific business area, please contact me – I may just be able to help!