September 1, 2014

Small Business News: Marketing Matters

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Marketing matters. You may think it’s the quality of your product or service, the connections of your investors or your partners, even the size of your budget. These all may be important at some critical phase in your business, but in the end there can be no business without good marketing. Who will tell customers about your business? That’s the marketer’s job. Is it you?

Message

Marketing missteps. What are you saying to your customers and community? Marketing is a dialogue, or should be, so think hard about the marketing message you are sending. What are you trying to say and who are you targeting? Missteps in marketing occur when you leave the customer out of the conversation. FoxNews.com

Boosting sales with some simple tips. Rolling out new products and getting them into the hands of enthusiastic prospects is a good recipe for success in any business. See how Jim Grundberg and Jason Pouliot boosted revenue for an ailing Tennessee-based golf putter manufacturer with the simplest of low tech small business strategies. How could you use their approach to boost sales for your small business? Bloomberg BusinessWeek

Messenger

Google alert! The search engine giant has tweaked its algorithm and if you market ANYTHING online you owe it to your business to take a few minutes out of your busy schedule and read Chantielle MacFarlane’s comprehensive overview of the so-called Google “caffeine” update. Grab yourself a latte and have a look. CIK Marketing

Can social media generate leads? You bet, says Greg Digneo. To prove it, Greg tells the story about how his little marketing company used a combination of techniques built around the social media revolution to generate 100 new sales leads in just 30 days. Cloud Marketing Labs

Channeling desire with Steve Jobs What can every small business owner on Earth learn from the CEO of Apple? That despite a high-tech world with online marketing and budgets much bigger than yours, salesmanship still matters. And it may be the hardest job of all when differentiating your product or service from the pack. Bloomberg BusinessWeek

Tools

Buying the best apps for your small business. The right app can help your business to be more efficient and productive, and application marketplaces help you to find, try out and buy the best app for you. But with so many of them springing up everywhere, how do you find the right store to even start shopping? Small Business Trends

Winning isn’t everything. Startup entrepreneurs in recent business competitions found there’s a lot more to being involved in the entrepreneur contests than they thought. Contests not only help gain publicity for new startups and networking opportunities with potential investors and partners (not to mention customers) but the feedback received can often spur ideas about new products, services and innovations. You’re The Boss

Startup

By any other name. Think it doesn’t really matter what you call your company? Well, think again, says Divya Gugnani, CEO of a culinary company called Behind The Burner, and an investor and board member on numerous other startups. So how does she suggest you go about picking the right name? Can you say “crowd sourcing?” Open Forum Innovation

Policy

Entrepreneurs in space? The Obama administration wants to outsource space cargo and astronaut transport to companies like Space Exploration Technologies Inc. operated by former PayPal owner Elon Musk, but some see it as a bailout for private space business. While the prospect of entrepreneurs being able to compete in this new frontier is exciting, the idea of what could amount to government sponsorship of big companies with no solid business model is less appealing. WSJ

Networking

Do you have the wrong networking strategy? Because networking is a hard thing to do at times, it’s hard to be critical of small business owners who at least make the effort. But, as Paul Mullan points out, there are definitely right ways and wrong ways to handle business networking whether offline or on sites like LinkedIn. Make these mistakes and you’re likely to get very little from your efforts. Tweak Your Biz

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