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Why your business needs a Digital Plan

If your business does not have a digital strategy then how do you know where you’re heading and what you’re trying to achieve?

In this post we identify 5 problems that in our experience will effect the operation of your business if you do not have a clear Digital Plan.

Your business has no focus

We find that businesses with a digital plan do not also have a set of business goals for what they want to achieve in terms of customer development or business growth and if you do not have these business have goals you likely do not have enough resources to reach the goals and you then do not evaluate whether you’re achieving those goals.

Do you really know your customers at all?

There can be no doubt that digital is one of the most measurable marketing tools ever.  However alot of the common statistical programs in use today will only tell you volume, not demographics and touchpoints – so how do you identify areas you can improve unless you know them?

Your business is not integrated

We often find if a business does have some kind of digital activity this is not focused on the business its run by ‘John who knows facebook’ at the same time as being a salesperson or the managers PA as she has a few spare hours a week.  This should be integrated with your business so everyone buys into the digital plan and can play their part in identifying opportunities for the business to grow online.

You are loosing out to competitors who do have a clear digital plan

Pretty much every business we work with has some form of statistical monitoring of enquiry traffic and even just traffic – Facebook insights??.  Unfortunately for alot of business this is as far as they go, they do not review and then act on the results of that review so they can decide where to implement the key aspects of the business marketing like email marketing and social media marketing.

Your marketing is not cost effective

Digital in 2016 has to be one of the most cost effective ways for any business to reach its target market, the only issue the growing business we work with come across is the lack of specific specialist digital skills which make it difficult for the business to respond effectively and this is where we come in as your outsourced digital partner.

So there you have it, five clear issued that will be effecting your business if you do not have a clear Digital Plan – if you are one of those businesses why not get in touch now, through the website here OR call us on 01392 241653 for a no obligation chat…

 

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Seven steps for dealing with negative online comments

The old adage that word of mouth wins customers is even more true in this digital age but these days many people will then use a search engine just to check out that recommendation.  What happens next is the decider before buying or moving on and it appears that there is significant research that demonstrates that people will move on due to negative online comments.

So how should you respond to negative online comments? well these are our seven steps for dealing with negative online comments.

1. Respond quickly

If you are a BIG brand a customer will expect a pretty quick response, within the hour we’d suggest is best and you are likely to find those big brands monitor all the social channels with a dedicated team and will respond quickly.

2. Stay in the channel

There is nothing worse for a customer who raises an issue in say Facebook for a business to then want to move that conversation elsewhere, no they wanted the conversation in facebook so keep it in that channel.

3. Admit when you are wrong

If a complaint does comes in then it helps to have a common strategy for dealing with it and try to be as honest as possible when responding to online feedback, if you don’t then you are likely to be found out.

4. Do your best to put the issue right

For many businesses there can be no doubt that Social media is the best thing that has happened to customer service because if they’re good at it, any company can build a reputation for quality fast but on the flip side, if a company is poor at customer service, it’s now far easier to find out.

5. Don’t differ in how you would handle a situation between channels

Try to be as honest as possible when responding to any online feedback and don’t hide comments you receive, or make any excuses.

6. Be human not corporate – let your employees be themselves it will help them to develop a rapport with the customer

If you have someone complain who is in the mindset where they want to defame or attack your business online and that you get the site where they are doing that shut down or a comment taken down, then the chances are the complainer will just take that complain elsewhere on another channel. So it’s best to open up a sensible dialogue with the person criticising you and take steps to resolve an issue in the first place.

7. Remember that thousands of people could read your response

If your twitter feed has a large number of followers bear in mind that any response can be amplified far quicker to a far larger audience so make sure that you establish the truth and if it requires a response – here is a great opportunity to turn a negative to a positive.

So there you have our seven steps for dealing with negative online comments, and now the sales pitch if you need help or even just a no obligation chat then why not contact us through the website here – we’d love to show you how the team at Gleave Media can help your business proposer on Social Media.

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five ways you can get social media WRONG!

These days pretty much every business has some kind of social media presence yet still some business don’t seem to gain any proactive benefit from these fabulous social media sites, is your business making those simple social media mistakes?

1. Boring updates  A boring update is anything that lacks your businesses unique personality or perspective, you need to give a new look and feel on and old topic or even going against the norm is what will get you noticed.

So ask yourself how you can infuse your own business ideals and the character this brings into each update – this is the key essence of branding, after all the last thing you want to be is forgettable.

2. Disrespecting others  Social media is not the place to publicly air your grievances with others, doing this on social media is simply no different than shouting insults at someone in public or raising your voice at a retail store employee. For sure it will get peoples’ attention, but that’s not the kind of attention you want.

3. Failing to promote others  Someone once said ‘givers gain’ and when it comes to building your business on social media and building a responsive network of followers you need to develop a reputation as someone who highlights others. Not only does this give credit where credit is due, it also communicates that you’re secure with your success and have the ability to promote others in your industry.

A couple of great ways to highlight others include:

  • When someone gives you a great piece of advice, post it on Facebook or Twitter and tag that person.
  • Why not use the endorsements feature on LinkedIn and begin endorsing people within your network.

4. Not replying to comments If your business has for example a Facebook page and people comment, by not replying to these comments this is no different than starting a conversation with someone and then ignoring their response. Actively monitoring comments and questions on every post can be time consuming, but even posting one follow-up comment per post can show you care and that you’re engaged.

5. Being tagged in questionable photos We were running a training session in Somerset in mid 2013 and one of the participants was easily found in a very questionable photo on Facebook – would you want that?  We know that lots of people will have had a photo taken that if you could wind the clock back you would want to change and indeed at the time may well have seemed rather funny, but you should think twice about allowing yourself to be tagged in any questionable photos whatever the site they are going onto.  The last thing you want is your business or staff in any image that bring the business into disrepute.

So here you have it our top five ways that your business can get Social Media wrong, and now the sales pitch if you need help or even just a no obligation chat then why not contact us through the website here – we’d love to show you how the team at Gleave Media can help your business proposer on Social Media.

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Three New Year Resolutions for your Online Marketing Strategy

Teenage girl enjoying winterThe start of 2013 is a great time for starting afresh with your business online marketing plan and the best way to do this is by setting some clear manageable targets and goals. These are our top three new year resolutions for your businesses online marketing.

1. Facebook WILL be part of my customer engagement strategy

As a growing business you simply can no longer afford to ignore facebook, it is growing and evolving at an amazing rate, your audience is active on this site and it is growing fast through mobile and the younger demographics which make great posts with some creative imagery a really good place to start.

2. My business will send at least one targeted email per month

As a business you need to keep in touch with your customers and prospects on a regular basis, you can guarantee if you dont then your competitors will. Setting yourself up to email on a monthly basis is the right kind of timeline to not deluge them but keep in touch – which is exactly what you want.

We run our own email marketing system called mailPDQ a very cost effective tool for collecting data from a multitude of sources and then segmenting this so it can then be used to target a message relevant to the audience, please contact us through the website for a free no obligation trial

3. Blogging will be part of your business engagement strategy

Blogging is a great way to put a personality on your business, not only does it positively help with your search engine rankings but it also allows you to position individuals within the business as leaders or at the very minimum contributors.  By incorporating images and video you can really make this updatebale area of your site almost have a life of its own, i.e. if your factory has a new forklift why not video all that it can do and why its a great addition. Basically think outside the box, the rules have changed…

So if your business can at least start down this route with these three simple steps you will begin to see a clear and accountable result for your actions and if you want help embedding this into a full Digital Marketing Strategy then we are the team to help, please get in touch here.

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Business Social Media Strategy

You can find content in all sorts of great areas and this is a really interesting video clip on Seth Godin’s reply about business social media strategy. He summarizes where he feels most businesses are going wrong by focusing on getting more network connections, instead of focusing on developing meaningful and long-term partnerships.

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great content

are your Internet ecommerce plans ready?

So next week the kids are back at school and we all say goodbye to summer, hello Autumn, while at the same time longing for summer to stay as long as possible.

What possibly does this have to do with your Internet business you may ask? Well now is a great time to put plans in place as to how your web business will work and function in the coming months, indeed you really should have already done this. If not some things you defiantly need to consider are the following;

Autumn offers and promotions – possibly the most important thing your internet business can do is have a plan in place as to when to offer and promote certain products at certain times.  So look at the calendar and what is happening in your market place, maybe special events like Halloween (Oct 31st) or maybe country specific Thanksgiving (Nov 22nd).  When you have found them tailor your offering accordingly, this may just mean you send a ‘fright’ email on the 31st October – either way think outside the box!

Email marketing – are your email lists uptodate, do you segment data so someone who likes product A and not B will only get info on product A? Does your email marketing system offer you a fully functioning solution and include the such things as downloadable PDF reports, who clicked what link, a to b split testing and custom integration? If not it may be time to look elsewhere, we offer an email system you can read more here.

Related Posts – email marketing top tips and how to write great email marketing subject lines.

Marketing Plan in place for Christmas – this is THE most important event happening if you sell online before the end of the year, so you need to ensure you have your plan in place as to how you promote, pack and then ship all sales you make.  So think about large items, or time related articles, e.g. if you sell Christmas cards the market for these probably ends early December.  Also if you are shipping overseas when are the latest dates as this should effect what dates that you can offer guaranteed delivery upto.

Anybody who orders and doesn’t get the item for Christmas will not be happy, so bear that in mind.

Finally when all this is done, learn from your success and failures so next year you can be better prepared and ready earlier.

If your business needs advice from a team that has been in and around the internet since 1999 why get in touch through our contact form here we’d be happy to help.

 

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