The life of an entrepreneur is really not for the faint of heart. You probably know it is not easy to grow a business. There are lots of ups and downs and sleepless nights. But you go through and build something that impact lives.
As a business owner you buy services, products, hire people, people you hire go to school, invest in self- improvement, make their family life better and when you have this machine working, no matter how small you make an impact in the community you live. They welcome you when you volunteer, donate, join local organizations, sponsor events. The people you hire, use their earnings locally and also impact their local community. You do this because this is who you are, no matter how small the business, no matter the challenges that big companies cannot even imagine.
So you feel like a hero right? All the hard work and sleepless nights worth going through, right?
Yes, as log as you don’t try to buy a car.
Last Labor day I decided to try to trade my Ford Escape. I love it, it was my third Ford Escape, but I put a lot of miles in it, so decided it was time to change to one with less miles. I went to @KarlMaloneToyota and since I was looking for a used car they sent me to @MaloneOutlet also known as Karl Malone Mitisubishi in Salt Lake City, Utah.
I spoke to the manager and he convinced me that by buying a new #Mitsubishioutlander would make more sense and I’d be paying something similar to my current car.
Credit checked, papers given, papers signed, I left with the car. Later I submitted my income taxes from 2014 and said for last year I had an extension.
So they submitted my application. Days went by and by the 20th of the month, the company that financed my prior car called saying I was 2 days late with my payment. I explained that I had sold the car to #maloneoutlet, they said they were never contacted. So, I sent an e-mail to the 2 finance experts at Malone Outlet. Never heard back.
Today same thing happened but I did get a call from the dealership saying they couldn’t get a deal so I had to take the new car back. They would “try” to have me not pay for the miles I used and of course, my prior car payment, late fees, the hit on my credit for being late: Not their problem.
In 7 years paying for cars, I was never late, Not even a day.
The reason the guy gave me: “I didn’t prove income” because I didn’t have the 2015 return that I told him I had filed an extension and could prove. Other years of income? Bank Statements that were provided? Didn’t count. The 29 days that they took to let me know and now me being forced to pay late fees for my car, have to pay 2 car payments on the same month and the hit on my credit?
Not their problem, they are going to try to have me not pay for the miles I used in the car I bought. Because I am guilt of not having a paycheck in a dead end job where I have to deceive people, disrespect people and treat them as if they were guilty of something and they deserve to lose. Probably because they needed to inflate some selling quota or something.
I may be just a stupid woman that sleazy car sales people can use and disregard but when is it wise to let a brand new car go to get it back used? How on Earth I have a car payment that I was approved for before and now they cannot get anything approved? Have they tried the same company where I had until this month a spotless record?
This may not be something new to you, it looks to me it is quite common since I’ve a friend who is also an entrepreneur that went to something very similar. But to me this is dis-respect for me and what I do.
They get the information and credit record before the deal is done. They should know what they are doing but most of all, they should take accountability too, after all now I’m the one with a car payment that I sold and that I’ll have to pay this month fee and penalties when during this period, the car was not mine. Let’s not mention that the finance company now says that I’m not being compliant because the old car is without insurance. Guess why? In my hand I have a Motor Vehicle Contract of Sale where I thought it meant they bought my car but apparently it is worthless.
Does it make sense to you? It does not make any sense to me. I feel sad and guilt that I chose a path outside a job and the feeling that somehow I am the one that needs to be punished.
Thank you #maloneoutlet! Great example of business practices that should be avoided!
Through the 20th century, most brands relied on the creativity and exercise of the media, advertising and entertainment companies to create content and deliver audiences. Mostly in traditional formats
In the 21st century, however, as consumers have been gradually shifting away from traditional forms of media content and distribution, the media universe has become both fragmented and digital. Consumers can choose from seemingly limitless content on their own terms and on their own devices. At the same time, marketers can connect more directly with users and customers through websites, blogs, apps and social media.
Meanwhile the battle for consumer’s attention has become brutal and requires new strategies and capabilities. This is for all industries.
The conclusion is one: We all have to be in the media business.
Some examples: Nike has become a major presence in social media with a miniseries on YouTube.
ANZ bank in Australia built a financial news portal
Marriot has created a content studio to develop videos for social media.
FairPrice a supermarket in Singapore has a food content platform called Food for Life with 2,000 videos in different languages.
Your company cannot ignore this trend and needs to choose a clear “way to play”. Despite the size of your company or budget, you should be aware and active in new media platforms.
As marketing consultants, that is what we’ve done for the past 12 years. Help companies create the right type of approach and content to get attention from their customers and prospects.
You cannot ignore the need to create specific strategies and media to reach people in a way they will pay attention to your message and take action.
It is a survival game, so are you in?
Baby boomers grew up learning how to consume. They grew up in front of the TV and commercials. They like to buy and many businesses fail to see this and don’t market to them. HomeCare included. Baby boomers are still the decision makers when it comes to buying solutions to their aging parents but they are also the end users now.
Trying to market to them the same way you market to their parents is a sure way to fail.
Here are a few ways to hit a home run when marketing to Baby Boomers:
- Don’t mention age.They don’t want to be reminded of their age, but of their accomplishments and of their future. Think more about the Bucket list idea, they may have to buy diapers but they want to hear about where to go in Oregon in their next bike trip. They don’t grow old, they move into different experience phases.
- Go where they are. They still have a house in the suburb. They may be moving to a bigger one soon since they plan to age in place. Home Depot HD -0.15% and Ace Hardware know this very well, and take advantage of it by locating their box stores where baby boomers can get to them easily.
- They are online and so should you. “They do their homework online. Baby Boomers know their stuff … so you better too.” Instead of retiring to rocking chairs on the front porch, they are actively looking for newly constructed homes where they can continue to pursue an active lifestyle surrounded by the latest amenities and HME solutions that don’t get in the way of their decor. “Invisible and useful” is what they are looking for.
- Yes, they are on social media. As you develop your social media strategy for baby boomers, be aware that while a 20-year old is posting photos of their night out on Instagram or Snapchat, a baby boomer is more likely to post a photograph of a new grandbaby or the new RV they just purchased on Facebook. It’s the more ‘traditional’ venues such as Facebook and Twitter that are used by baby boomers; so keep your focus there. (Who would have thought we would ever call Facebook traditional).
- Difficult topics. Many times issues like incontinence will not be discussed on Facebook but boomers may look for forums or ask questions in places like Quora.com
- Fun first. Remember what can touch an emotional cord with boomers. They love nostalgia. The Woodstock Festival was much more than a concert featuring the likes of Joan Baez, Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead and Jimi Hendrix; it was a countercultural event which symbolized, among other things, that the baby boomers were not going to be trussed up by their parent’s morals and lifestyle. They would think and act for themselves – and they still want to be thought of that way. The least hint of patronizing the baby boomers will flatten any marketing campaign, just as Wile E. Coyote was flattened by the Road Runner.Marketing to Baby Boomers is different than marketing to other generations.We specialize in consulting on behavioral marketing for boomers for the HME industry.
Give us a call and let’s work together. 801-8429765 firstname.lastname@example.org
Here is a guerrilla strategy we used to create local awareness to our new venture of online courses called Curious Mondo. We made tons of handmade Pokeballs and left at Pokestops around town. (Balls are used in the Pokemon Go craze). These balls lead them to a free online course on Pokemon Go where we capture leads.
I think this was pretty clever, I’ll keep you updated on the results. It is usually a clever marketing strategy when you piggy back on something the media is talking about. You get attention easier and of course, depending on how you are marketing you can get a lot of traffic too.
Our focus was to get attention locally right now, while the topic is on top. This is the reason we went with handmade Pokeballs. If we had the time we would find a way to make the balls with another material and in a larger number. But sometimes you just need to act fast!
Yes, Pokemon Go is not just a game for kids, your business can benefit from this craze.
The speed at which Pokemon Go has spread is unprecedented. Less than a week after launch, this augmented reality mobile exploration game has been installed on twice as many phones as Tinder, it has double the engagement of Snapchat, and it is eclipsing Twitter in its percentage of daily active users.
source: Inc magazine
For those not yet in the know, Pokémon GO uses your phone’s GPS and camera to turn the real world into a massive hunting ground for the iconic creatures, but it also transforms local landmarks and businesses into Pokémon Gyms (where trainers go to train their Pokémon and battle other teams) and PokéStops, which players can physically visit to stock up on free accessories and items like PokéBalls.
People of all ages are spending a lot of time playing this game. Just walk around your local park and you will get an idea. Total addiction and we are talking about a very buggy app.
Smart businesses are taking advantage of this Pokemon Go craze too. You should too! You just need to be a little creative and read this article to learn a few tips. If you own a retail place, a restaurant, coffee shop you can get a lot of foot traffic.
If you are in another type of business you can also get more attention and create awareness in your local community.
Even if you have a lemonade stand, you can set it under a gym and have a lot of quarters coming to you.
Here are a few examples of what is being done:
A local brew house is a Pokémon Gym, and they are offering discounted drinks for members of the team that holds the gym.
A pizza place where you get a free drink if you own the gym
L’inizio’s pizza had business go up 75 per cent after paying $10 to continue to put up Lures connected to the store.
Smoketown Helicopters in Lancaster County started offering aerial Pokémon Tours as a way to “Get one up on your competition and catch them in the air!
One business was advertising $4 off your meal if you used your own lure.
A lot of businesses adding lures, which I’ll explain in a second.
Here are a few things you need to do:
1. Find Out if Your Business Is a Gym or PokeStop
What makes Pokemon Go different from many other games is that it doesn’t keep people shut up in their rooms. The game runs off an augmented reality HUD, or heads-up display, of the real world. Players’ avatars explore with them as they catch Pokemon, collect rewards from PokeStops, battle other users at Gyms, and team up to defend their territory.
Figuring out whether your business is a PokeStop or Gym is the first thing you should do. PokeStops and Gyms attract foot traffic without any effort-players flock to them for rewards and to battle other players-and they can be leveraged for massive sales if you know how.
According to the company, at this point you cannot add your business as a gym or Pokestop. My feeling is that this will change very soon.
2. Throw Down a Lure, and Enjoy the Show
Pokemon Go offers a range of in-app purchases. The one that is most important for your small business is Lures.
Lures increase the rate of Pokemon generation in the area around the PokeStop where they’re placed for one half hour. That may not sound that powerful, but Pokemon are scarcer than you think.
What’s even more incredible is just how affordable luring is. Let’s do the math. With $100 netting you 14,500 Pokecoins and an eight-pack of Lures costing 680 Pokecoins:
14,500 Pokecoins / 680 = 21 eight-packs of lures
(21 * 8)/2 = 84 hours
$100/84 hours = $1.19 per hour
All you have to do is:
- Tap the red Pokeball at the bottom of your HUD
- Tap “Shop”
- Scroll down and tap the purple, box-shaped Lures to purchase. You’ll re-direct to your app store’s payment system
- Once back in-app, tap the red Pokeball again, then tap “Items”
- Tap the purple Lure to activate!
For a little more than a dollar an hour, you can bring virtually guaranteed crowds to your business. The ROI here is ridiculous, so if your business is anywhere near a PokeStop, this is something you absolutely have to try.
Capitalize on Your Business Being Near a Pokemon Gym
Gyms are a separate kind of animal entirely from PokeStops. You can’t put down Lures, but you don’t have to either, because users are converging on Gyms day and night to face off with other users and “take control” of the gym for either team Mystic, Valor, or Instinct.
To see if your business is near a gym, you can check the Ingress map, or just open Pokemon Go on your phone and look for the tall structures with little Pokemon near the top. They’re not hard to spot-they’re the biggest structures on the in-game map.
Capitalizing on your proximity to a gym is more about creative marketing in real life than anything else. Here are some ideas for ways to engage with the droves of people standing near your business with their eyes glued to their phones:
3. Move too
You can go to Pokestops with lures of Gyms and distribute your promotional material, coupons etc.
Not a bad idea for a food truck to go to Pokestops with lures. People get hungry when they walk a lot.
4. Social Media
Did you get a Pokemon near your office?
Post on Social Media and blog about it.
Is it a rare one? Post more pics of it.
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. When they discovered that Pokémon and PokéStops were scattered across their grounds, they got creative and photographed them next to various displays and pieces of art, then blogged about it on their site.
If you have a coffee shop or local restaurant that doubles as a PokeStop. Create a Pokémon-inspired drink or dish and offer customers who show you the game on their phone a discount! Announce that on social media.
You may be thinking: “This is just another fad” and you are probably totally right. But this is when smart marketing comes in. You embrace the fad, use the keywords like Pokemon Go and Catch them all in your blog etc, get creative and find a way to promote your business linking to this fad and benefit from the fad by spending no or very little money.
Or you keep doing what you are doing and getting the results you are getting.
If you need instructions on how to play the game, Curious Mondo offers a free training on Pokemon Go. So you don’t have to spend hours watching weird videos on YouTube.
If it is time for your business to reach the next level, you might want to have a marketing advisor by your side. Then, just contact us for a marketing check up!
Let’s discuss Life by design when aging.
Baby Boomers want to have a say in every aspect, they want to have their individual choice and decide how things are going to happen. Very different than their parents specially because they don’t accept: “This is the way it has always being done”. Baby Boomers don’t stick to the script!
They will be active and independent for as long as possible and then more.
So when it comes to aging in place and how they are treated, things must be in their own terms.
Are all Boomers making the most prudent housing decisions as they approach retirement? Not necessarily. Regardless, their decisions will have important implications as this generation, once again, does it their way.
While many Boomers are planning major home improvements in the next three years, a significant number will make style and value a priority over aging-friendly features. In fact, the top Boomer reasons to renovate are similar to those of younger generations:
39% plan for major home improvements in the next 3 years
Top reasons for that:
- 78% increase home value
- 78% make repairs
- 66% energy efficiency
- 65% update home style
Aging related reasons:
- 58% easier to maintain
- 44% easier for aging
- 23% health needs
Note: major home improvement is defined as spending $2,000 or more on the job.
Source: 2013 Demand institute housing & community survey.
In some instances, baby boomers will move, but they still want to be close to home. When Baby Boomers do move, they don’t intend to go very far. Only one-third will move out of state, with the lure of “wanting to be closer to family” being just as strong as a “change of climate.” Indeed, more than half of Boomers will move within 30 miles of their current home. Further, only one in five Boomer movers wants to relocate to senior-related housing or active adult communities. For many Boomers, maintaining a connection to their communities and families is an important consideration as they decide where to live.
The population is aging, but Boomers are not necessarily looking for “senior” products and solutions. While there is limited interest in aging- and health-specific home improvements, those that make the home easier and less costly to maintain do resonate with Boomers. Among those moving, the majority will seek single-story homes, and subtle touches that make aging in the home easier without sacrificing style, like smaller yards and universal design elements, will appeal to Boomers.
As long as our homes are our private retreats, we will want them as comfortable as possible. As our needs for what is comfortable change, we will adapt our homes to those needs.
Online shoppers in the United States will spend $327 billion in 2016, up 45% from $226 billion this year and 62% from $202 billion in 2011, according to a projection released today by Forrester Research Inc.
Are you really ready to get a piece of this pie? Is your website ready and following current trends? Read this post and don’t skip the last praragraph.
Can people easily navigate and take action on your site no matter which type of device they are using?
4 out of 5 consumers use a Smartphone to shop. If you don’t have a responsive website, you are losing sales.
Forrester says that 192 million U.S. consumers will shop online in 2016, up 15% from 167 million in 2012. But the bigger factor in driving e-commerce growth is that each shopper will spend more on average, the report says. U.S. consumers in 2016 will each spend an average of $1,738 online, up 44% from $1,207 in 2012.
People are spending more time online because of their mobile devices and because they do expect better deals than brick and mortar stores.
So it really does not matter if you are an online business, a brick and mortar store or a manufacturer. For you to keep being competitive you need to improve your skills online and have a website that performs according to what people want. Brochure websites telling how great your company is are dead.
Here are a few points to consider related to your site:
1. Clean Design
A quality design is attractive and easy to read with intuitive navigation. Most importantly, a clean design helps viewers focus on the value of your brand and content instead of distracting graphics and large amounts of text. Often, customers associate website designs with the quality of a particular company or product. Hence, a clean design is vital to providing a positive user experience that encourages customers to return.
2.Effective Color Scheme
Color schemes are more important than customers realize. Different colors have the ability to evoke emotional responses, such as calm, happiness, or frustration. When it comes to using colors in your website design, it’s essential to consider your company’s niche, target audience, branding, and the elements of color theory.
Websites that are easy to use are more likely to garner customer interest and encourage business. Usability can be increased by displaying product and service information in a clear, concise manner. Make sure your website has all the features a customer would need for the site to be easily accessible.
4. Call to Action
Placing calls to action on your website encourages customers to contact your business. A friendly suggestion, such as “Contact us today!” demonstrates that your business wants to develop a relationship with its customers. It’s important that calls to action are appropriate for a visitor’s level of engagement with your company.
5. Active Blog
Featuring a blog on your website is a great way to connect with them, especially if your posts encourage readers to interact with your brand. By regularly providing readers with fresh, helpful, engaging content, your brand becomes a trusted resource and an industry authority.
6. Responsive Sites
95% of mobile device users count on their devices to search for local products and services. To effectively reach this growing population of mobile users, businesses need to be sure that their websites are available from any device. Business planning the launch of a website would be better served by choosing a responsive design capable of adapting to any device.
15. Integration with Social Media
Integration with social media is no longer a novelty – it’s a requirement. As technology makes information sharing more convenient, businesses lacking social media integration fail to take advantage of what has been likened to modern day word-of-mouth advertising. Social media provides a venue in which customers can promote your brand, provide reviews, and stay in-the-know about your company’s latest news.
Yes, there is a lot involved in a good website. We’ve been building websites for 12 years and as online consultants we know what makes a site work.
For only 3 days we have a super offer for you: We will build a responsive website, migrate all content you have on your existing site, add an on-site blog and train you or your team members to update the site. All for only $950. Call us ASAP to get started: 801-842-9765
2016 is the year of Live Streaming. 2014 was the year of mobile, 2015 the year of video and now we have the perfect storm.
Live streaming is nothing new but now it is simple, can be used on mobiles and immediate connects you to an audience, plus this audience can interact with you.
Live streaming is all about making your business up close and personal for your audience.
Connecting with your audience always adds to your reputation as a company that cares about its customers.
Live streaming is also about getting attention in a moment. Attention is currency to the human brain, it is not easy to get and can be very expensive when you resist adopting new opportunities.
Here are a few ways your business can benefit from Live Streaming:
- Brand equity: Be there when they look for you. Engage on a more personal level
- Q&A for customers and prospects– Invite them to ask. Have different team members answer.
- Product or service education – Is there a learning curve to start using your products or service? Here is the perfect way to show how they work
- Broadcast events– Ribbon cuttings, anniversaries, special company events, parties
- Discuss new developments and company news– New website, people in the company moving places, exciting news? Keep your people in the loop.
- Introducing new employees– Some team members coming in, others going out. Talk about this with your customers
- Release of new products– How cool it is to show an interested audience what is coming up?
- Information product creation free during live– Online courses, training programs can be created live.
- Behind the scenes– Show us what happens behind those doors
- How-tos– Cooking, crafts, how to install
- Donor Research Connect with donors by showing them how their donations get put to use. Or use it to solicit donations online by live streaming a fund raising event.
- Restaurants. Show your specials! Live stream it! Show your audience how popular you are by the long lines.
- Public Relations. Create a live streaming press release or announcement. Invite journalist, local influencers and prospects.
- Research. Ask customers for immediate feedback on a product, idea, person, new menu item, etc.
- Creating Podcasts
- Tip of the Day. Industry specific news piece that would interest your customers.
- Special Offers. Create limited special offer opportunities to drive in-store or online traffic.
- Consider Timing: Don’t go too long.
- What are some best practices I should follow?
- Respond to comments live: People who are watching your stream will have the option to comment.
- Rehearse: Test your equipment and do a bit of planning when creating your first live stream just to get used to the experience.
- High-speed connection: Since it is a live stream, having a powerful internet connection is a must for the best viewer experience
- Charge your device: You don’t want your device to die in the middle of the conversation.
- Hold your device vertically: Most apps don’t calibrate for the landscape view. This will change soon
- Have a call-to-action in the title: Direct your viewers to what you want them to do next.
Live streaming today can be done from any phone. Not much to invest to get started.
We’ve been working with Live Streaming for many years. Training, creating products, creating online courses.
When you decide to start using live streaming in your business, we can consult with you, show you how to do it and even create a complete strategy. Just contact us!
Sometimes it’s the unexpected things that can truly revolutionize a business.
Most of the time when we think about getting the word out about our business and engaging more with existing customers, we think of traditional and proven methods like
advertising. Very often we tend to see less and less results and more and more expenses going towards ads. Advertising has changed massively over the last decade and the next
5 years are not going to be any different.
Maybe you tried a little of social networks and saw no results either. Very time consuming, hard to track and quite often disappointing.
A basic testament to any human existence are the five senses: sight, hear, touch, taste and smell. Such senses are ideal to appeal to when selling products online.
Appealing to all the human senses helps to engage emotions and, ultimately, influence a
purchasing behavior. Kissmetrics, for example, indicates that 96 percent of first time site
visitors won’t return. It is essential to create a ‘boomerang’ effect!
If we choose to focus on one of these senses: Hearing or Sight – audio or video podcasts
we are more likely to engage the audience.
Let’s see how a video or audio podcast can help your business:
1. Traffic generation A podcast can drive massive traffic to your site.
2. Build real relationships with your audience podcasts have a way of building
relationships without the two parties ever actually interacting. It may be a one-
sided medium, but the feeling you get after hours of listening to a person talk is one of friendship.
3.Increased conversions – People know that they are not being “sold” but rather “encouraged.”
4. It is way more targeted and you can get the numbers of how many of those people are listening to your show every day.
5. You have the ability to instantaneously make products that your people want – which puts money in the bank straight away.
6.The influential connections that you can make by having a podcast has got to be up there among the biggest advantages.
7. Having a podcast is a brilliant platform to allow you to get on stage and create a business out of speaking.
I know that idea about creating an audio or video podcast can be daunting because it sounds complicated, but it is not. It is a simple process and the investment is really low.
I’ll be giving a free, live, online class this week on this topic and would love to have you attend!
All you need to do is save your seat here:
If the time is not the best for you, don’t worry, there is a free replay that night as well so
register anyway to get the access details.
We’ve been busy working on anew project that we believe will impact the lives of many people.
Free, live, interactive online courses to improve professional skills and empower people to go on new business ventures.
Our first courses start in less than a week. We are really excited about this venture.
Take a look at our site and let us know what you think.