Think Tank

Campaigns that produce results require a plan

November 17th, 2015 by hutdogs

EmailFBboostIn order to create a marketing campaign that produces results, develop a plan:

  1. Define a Specific Goal:  Stay focused on the goal. Are you offering a deal, trying to grow your list, get votes, promote an event, ect. Be specific.
  2. What’s the Hook? A giveaway? A survey? A discount? What’s in it for the people who will get you to your goal?
  3. What tools are needed? How many tools do you need to accomplish your goal?  Sometimes it only takes a few. We’ve had great success with 3 simple tools: a Constant Contact email, a Facebook post and a Facebook ad for $50. For B2B’s you might want to try LinkedIn.
  4. Where can you find your audience? Always start with your current customers and best fans then choose the social media channels where they hang out.
  5. Can you leverage your current email list?
  6. Should you include a live event? There is nothing on-line that can replace a face-to-face, old-fashioned hand shake and a smile.
  7. What print collateral will help? If you don’t have a big budget for a direct mail campaign, print a campaign message on a business card.
  8. Who can you collaborate with? Is there someone who is trying to reach the same audience. Could you partner with a non-profit or another business and increase the campaign’s reach?

Try Constant Contact for free and give it a go.

The Price of Free

October 26th, 2015 by hutdogs

A free trial or sample is a great way to test a service or product to see if it can benefit your business.

But switching an established service to a different service, just because the different service offers a few months free or some other ‘free’ enticement if you switch, may be more costly than you think.

Saving money is important to every business, but often times, ‘free’ has other costs associated with it.  Usually it comes down to time and quality. Free often takes more time and it may not provide the quality to which you have grown accustom.

FreeReallySo, you may want to ask a few questions before jumping for that ‘free’ offer:

  • Is this item/service an important component for the success of your business?
  • What will it really cost you to switch?
  • Is there a new learning curve?  Will you be able to adjust to the new system and how much time (a.k.a. cost) will that take?
  • Does it provide the same level of support/quality?
  • Will the ‘free’ period ultimately lock you into a higher rate or an inferior product/service?

The old adages “you get what you pay for” and “ain’t ‘nothing in life is free’  tend to prove themselves time and time again.

Over the long run, building reliable systems for your marketing and fostering relationships with your vendors, will pay off. Seek tools and services that compliment your business model and provide the level of support your business deserves.  Having solid vendors and processes can be quite… um… freeing.