Archive for December, 2014

More Smartphones, More Opportunities

Smartphone usage has broken the glass ceiling – instantly connecting consumers to the products and information they seek. To remain in the game, businesses must meet the demands of ever-evolving use of mobile devices.

Below are three must-seize marketing opportunities well served by the ubiquitous use of smartphones today.

Mobile sites: Online storefronts know that users are more than likely shopping from their mobile device. This means a full-blown web site built for large-screen viewing is apt to put off the shopper. This is why most marketing sites today have a mobile-friendly version that auto detects the user’s device and displays accordingly to the shopper.

Smartphone apps: Customer loyalty has been propelled to a new level with the shopping apps they can use right from the palm of their hands. Storefronts like Amazon.com are locked and loaded, influenced by individual trends and ready to display tempting products for purchase. Members can even buy with one click.

Social media: Smart marketers know they must engage consumers via social networks. Facebook makes it easy to create a business page and then, through the viral process of cross-media marketing through platforms such as Twitter, YouTube and others, marketers are reaching relevant — and even international — audiences in real time.

The immediate impact of mobile marketing has left many long-established companies in the dust. No app and no mobile site means less visitors and less sales. They are faced with hiring media consultants to quickly bring them up to speed.

Staying in the know with regard to mobile media is today’s key to smartphone marketing opportunities. Trends come and go faster than ever now, so riding the fickle waves are more daunting. Therefore, digitally-minded marketers focused on marketing to their customers likes will continue to take the smartphone marketing future by storm.

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Improving Response Rates from Your Mailing Campaigns

Mailing campaigns are an important marketing and advertising strategy, but it can become too costly when response rates are low.  To improve response rates for your mailing campaign, follow these easy tips.

Find Your Target Audience

Because mailers are not the cheapest form of marketing, it is crucial to find your target audience. When mailers are sent to the right people at the right time, they are highly effective at creating leads or sales. Sending out fewer mailers to highly targeted audience will often have better response results than sending out higher volumes of mailers to a poorly targeted audience.

Consider Using Postcards

Mail that has to be opened is often thrown away before the recipient has a chance to see what great offer awaits them. The advantage of using a postcard is that all the information you want to convey is readily available.

Make a Response Easy

People prefer to respond to mail offers in different ways so make every option available. Include a form for a mail response, a phone number, a web address for online responses and an invitation to any social media sites you use.

Use Easy-to-Understand Language

Because a mailer is a paper version of a sales person, the tone should be conversational. Avoid using technical terms or industry jargon in order to make the recipient feel comfortable with your offer.

Highlight the Benefits of Your Product

Emphasize what is most important to the potential customer. Make it very clear what solutions your product or offer have for the customer. People generally are not interested in anything that does not directly benefit them.

Track Your Efforts

To continually improve your response rates, make sure you are thoroughly tracking each mailing campaign. Use the data to find trends and learn what works and what doesn’t.

 

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Improving conversion rates for landing pages, 5 simple tips

Every small business needs a website, but it’s important to make sure that people who find your website use it to become your customers.  In most cases, great graphics aren’t going to make them make a purchase.  These five strategies, however, have been shown to increase conversion rates.

 

  1. Have an e-mail newsletter sign-up.  Signing up for the company newsletter means that your viewers will be reminded about your company on a regular basis.
  2. Offer a printable coupon.  Having a coupon that customers have to print out will get them to come into your physical location, and you’ll be able to keep track of your conversion rates manually.  If you sell online, give a coupon code.  Ideally, tailor each code to your different landing pages.
  3. Offer a flash or lightening deal.  If people think that a deal is going away, they’ll be a lot more likely to take a risk with a new product or business.  Of course, make sure that you can handle the quick surge in orders that these deals tend to produce.
  4. Make it easy to contact your business.  If your business relies on selling a new product or customization, you want to make sure that new customers can easily reach you.  Prominently display your phone number and e-mail address, and make sure that both are answered promptly.
  5. Keep it relevant to their search terms.  The most important aspect of a landing page is that the people who find it should be interested in your product or service.  Simply attracting everyone with a general interest will lead to a lot of people taking a quick look and leaving.

 

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Why You Should Pay Attention to Demographics When it Comes to Print and Mail

Why You Should Pay Attention to Demographics When it Comes to Print and Mail Marketing

One of the most important things you as a business owner must do is know the demographics of your customers when it comes to your print and mail campaigns.

Few products or services are useful to everyone. By outlining the individualities of a company’s best potential customers, a model of the best potential customers to target in a print and mail campaign can be accomplished. Using demographics, you can target potential customers by age, gender, and income level, the area they reside in, number of children in the home, marital status, education level and several more, permitting a print and mail campaign to reach the potential customers who would be the most receptive to your product(s) or services(s).

In some situations you may need more specific local demographics about how many people own homes or cars, attend college or how many people use the internet.

By using demographics in your print and mail campaigns you can help avoid expensive mistakes with your print and mail marketing plan. They can help disclose that placing brochures on car windshields at a shopping plaza may not be the best idea for your marketing plan for an errand running business. This type of business needs to be directed at small and single owner businesses.

Doing a survey can help provide you with marketing information about fitness center preferences. You can use the local demographics to find subscribers to your city’s biggest newspapers as the best customer market for your new magazine.

Using both large scale and local demographics will provide you with accurate information you need to make your print and mail marketing campaign a success. It will also save you money, time and energy that could have been put to better use running your business.

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Tying Together Email Marketing and Direct Mail

Email marketing and direct marketing are two powerful strategies that can grow a company’s consumer base rapidly. Tying the two of them together can create a magnificent fleet of loyal customers and potential leads. However, tying the two together requires a strategy, and the strategy must begin with an effective direct marketing plan.

 

Analyzing Demographics

Analyzing demographics is the first step in targeting individuals who will most likely respond to the direct mail. The company must conduct research to discover the age groups, customs and economic statuses of the people they wish to target. Next, the company will want to launch a successful marketing campaign.

 

Creating a Message That Sticks

Creating superior advertisments is the second step in tying direct mail to email marketing. Someone has to come up with a catch to the direct mail that prompts the targeted individuals to respond. The goal is to land the targeted individuals on a website where they can enter their email addresses. To succeed with that plan, the direct mail has to be engaging. It has to offer the reader a reward for visiting such a site. Many consumers dispose of boring direct mail. Therefore, the sending party will need to make a statement that the prospective consumer cannot refuse. The direct mail should contain a message that encourages the receiving party to invite friends and family members to the site, as well.

 

The persons who provide their email addresses will become a permanent part of the company’s email list. Then, the company can use the email marketing technique to continue communicating and presenting undeniable offers. A business can transmit a wide variety of information through email. Some examples of email marketing subjects are product giveaways, coupons, sales announcements and the like. Business numbers can rapidly grow with this method of tying together email marketing and direct mail.

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Social media and the print industry

The marketing industry has come a long way with this millennium. More and more, marketing companies have drifted away from traditional print advertisements and have become more willing to embrace advertising on social media websites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest. While the main reason for this is that it is a lot easier to get one’s name out on social media, it’s also cheaper in the long run. Here are some important details to consider when discussing the shift from print to the Internet.

Cost

Cost is always a big first consideration for a marketing company. Instead of paying for a print ad in a magazine or newspaper that might not even get you the attention you seek, you can just sell your business, product, or brand on social media websites. That savings is especially huge for a small business looking for its slice of the pie.

Ease of use

It’s hard to argue with switching to a simpler platform. The simpler it is to get your marketing into the public eye, the better you can market, and the better you can make more. It’s much easier to discern who is reading or watching or sharing your advertisements, so it is a huge boon to future marketing.

Environmental considerations

Of course, a responsible company must always take into consideration the environment. As more and more advertising is aimed at the Internet, we are seeing less and less desire for magazines and newspapers, which results in less paper wasted.

Nostalgia

A lot of people criticize the shift towards the Internet, suggesting that no only does it hurt print industries, but it destroys a culture. While culture is important, it wouldn’t be the first time we’ve sacrificed a culture for progress and environmentalism. Nostalgia should not be enough to hold back progress.

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How to develop sales leads using print marketing

In a digital marketplace, the importance of print marketing to generate sales leads should not be underestimated. There are several essential steps to beginning a successful print marketing campaign.

1. Branding – It is important the business branding is consistent and recognizable across all ads. This helps reenforce the message in the minds of readers and will therefore increase the likelihood that viewers will translate into a sales lead.

2. Contact Information – Every print marketing released should have specific contact information that can track sales leads and connect them to a exact printed material. For example, flyers might have a different phone number or extension from magazine ads. Therefore the business can measure which marketing piece was more successful. Also, clearly displayed and prominent contact information allows for greater change to convert print marketing into viable sales leads.

3. Slogans – Developing a slogan that can be repeated and built upon in a full print marketing campaign is great to increase sales leads. The more excitement and buzz created from the print marketing which an individual can relate to and commit to memory, the better for the advertiser. Slogans do a great job in achieving that goal. Think about Nike’s, Just Do It, slogan and how effective that has been in building their brand – a print ad never goes out without the slogan.

4. Focus Distribution – It is important to isolate your target market and develop a print campaign that will reach your desired demographic. This will allow you to gain a higher impact and grow more sales opportunities. It also helps control budget by having a strategic approach to print distribution, allowing to have the message reach the right people.

Print marketing is a great way to increase sales leads, just make sure to take these tips into consideration to make the most of your marketing campaign.

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How Can Traditional Print Take on a More Active Form

How can traditional print take on a more active form? This question, if not the answer has gained a lot of traction in the past five to 10 years. Why? Because there has been trend for books to be published and marketed in ways that really didn’t exist prior to 10 years ago. The same can be said of magazines and even newspapers.

Amazon has become a dirty word in many publishing circles. Authors can publish their work in nontraditional ways, including doing so on their own without the benefit of a publishing company. The Fifty Shades of Gray trilogy sold millions and millions of copies, and it was originally self-published without a paper version. Those success stories can turn traditional publishing on its head.

What can traditional publishing do to remain relevant? One of the first steps is to ensure that it doesn’t ignore the new forms of publishing. Harvard Business Publishing is an example of how electronic media isn’t forgotten, but it is even embraced. Authors and books are discussed on blogs. Electronic media spreads the word about new books and authors. The book is then published and it can succeed or fail on its own merits. It won’t succeed or fail based on whether it is published on the written page or only via a tablet.

Another solution is to run fewer initial copies of the paper books. Books that are released in conjunction with electronic media, as well as on the page can be successful. Once again, word must be spread, and that will be more likely to be successful when the word is spread online. People are online, like it or not, hyping the opening of a book online only makes sense.

Traditional media may not ever be what it was, but that doesn’t mean it is going away. Book publishers who want paper books to succeed will need to learn how to adjust, and if they do, their products will survive.

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