The 3 Principles of Marketing: Attract, Engage, Convert

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

In today’s business landscape it’s all too easy to get lost in the world of digital marketing, to the point we forget the power of more traditional forms of marketing – such as human interaction, word of mouth marketing, and paper based formats.

Indeed, not all that long ago, if you were a small business owner then you would go to your local newsagent or corner shop and place a postcard sized advert (either handwritten or professionally printed) that touted your services to the local community with a phone number, and that was your marketing done.

Today, however, due to the phenomenon of information overload where it’s becoming harder and harder to attract people’s attention, let alone engage with them on a meaningful level, it seems all forms of marketing need to be much higher fidelity – both from a creative and intellectual perspective along with a more polished finish; for instance, it would now seem necessary to find a specialty printer to produce high quality documents rather than printing at home.

Similarly, in the digital world, it’s no longer about having a website for your business, or a social media page; that’s not enough today – it’s all about creating the most engaging and attractive digital collateral to ensure you reach the hearts and minds of your audience… as otherwise, they will pass you by and click off.

Therefore, it’s important to master the skill of marketing and look at the three core aspects:

  1. ATTRACT

The first step in the process of marketing is that you need to attract people’s attention, which means, you need to interrupt their current thoughts – distracting them enough to grab their attention and consider your message.  This is why so many marketing campaigns use questions, intense visuals, or focus on a particular pain point so that people stop their inner thoughts for a moment and focus on what it is you want them to focus on.

There are many ways to attract your audience, though one of the most compelling is to use a question within your marketing material – as this way, people can’t help but answer.  For instance, try not to think about the answer to this question.  

  1.  ENGAGE

Now that you have your audience’s attention you need to engage them, and the best way to engage people is to make it about them, rather than you… meaning, you must make your marketing about how you solve their problems, rather than about how great your company is.  Focus on the audience rather than your company and you will engage them much more.

  1.  CONVERT

The final step in the formula is to convert their attention and engagement into action – meaning, they do a particular thing, such as call you or visit your website.  In terms of converting a looker into a buyer on your website, again, it is all about creating value for the customer by focusing on their needs; as most people prefer to focus much more on themselves rather than your company.

Why Your Online Presence Is More than Your Google Listings

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

If you would like to build a strong brand image online, you will need to focus on more than one area. While search engines have a lot of power and they can get the word out about your services and your products, they can’t make people buy. It is the communication method and the sales funnel you put in place that will turn visitors into customers. If you would like to get trusted by people and get them to consider buying from you, it is crucial that you are present on more than one platform.

People Buy from People Not Companies

The main reason why you will need to brand yourself as a person is that people often make emotional decisions when buying something. The good news is that once you can connect with people on a personal level, they are more likely to listen to your advertisements and check out your Google ads. While search engine optimization and online marketing are important, you will also have to focus on connecting with your audience.

You Need Social Proof

Instead of simply saying how good you are at what you are doing, you will also have to collect feedback and manage your online reputation. Ask for feedback and rating on your website, your blog, your social media site, and direct people to your Google pages and various review sites. People don’t trust companies as much as they used to, and always check what other people are saying about their experience before they make a final decision.

Traffic Without Conversions Equals Zero Money

No matter how many people you get to visit your website through Google links, you will not make money unless they become customers. This is why you need to build an effective sales funnel that will guide them through the process of becoming a customer from the moment they land on your page. Your sales funnel needs to aim at engaging with your customers and creating emotional response to trigger buying decisions.

You Will Not Sell at the First Visit

Not many people will decide to buy from you the first time they visit your site. While Google retargeting is good to help you recapture the attention of people who have been on your site before but didn’t commit to order, you will also be able to get the message out there by being present on social media, on blogs, and other channels. The more your potential customers see you, the more likely they will be to remember your brand when they need what you offer.

Fresh Content Beats Everything

If you have a one-page website with old content, you are not likely to rank high in search engines and gain the trust and attention of your market. Instead, you will need fresh content. Text only is not as good as a mix of various types of content, such as infographics, videos, images, and presentations. The freshest your site is, the higher your search engine rankings and reputation will be.

Interaction with Your Market

While getting people to notice your brand is the first aim of your site and marketing strategy, you will also have to find a way to interact with people. If you would like to find unique ways to do so, you can check out Better Bistro Media so you can find the right campaign for your industry, your market, and your target customer. Not all methods work equally well for each brand, so you will have to tailor your campaigns to your needs.  

Consistent Brand Messages

If you would like a strong online presence, it is crucial that you focus on your brand messages. They need to be simple and straight-to-the point. Your audience doesn’t have the time to listen for longer than a couple of minutes, and their first question will be “what is in it for me”. Make sure that your brand messages are consistent across all the channels, or you might end up confusing your potential buyers.

Customer Service Counts

You can get people to visit your site and engage with your brand, but if you let them down when it comes to customer service, they will never return. Not to mention that they will end up leaving you a negative feedback. You have to implement online chat and other technologies so your visitors can find what they are looking for and get the answers they want as soon as possible. You can gain trust by being approachable and responsive.

There Are Other Search Engines Out There

You might be focusing on Google listings, as it relates to the largest search engine out there, but chances are that you are missing out on traffic from other sources. Don’t neglect other search engines or directories that can send you qualified traffic and people who are interested in what you have to offer. You might want to be present on international markets, as well, or on local directories to target people in your area.

People Trust Paid Ads Less and Less

One of the reasons why many webmasters have turned away from Google advertising is that customers searching for information online are more careful which links to click. If they know that it is a paid ad, they might avoid it and look for the organic search results instead. You can’t rely on paid ads alone. Not to mention that as soon as your budget is gone, you will lose all the traffic that comes to your site daily. If you provide content and build reciprocity, you have a better chance of gaining people’s trust online.

There are plenty of ways you can engage with people online and get them to engage with your brand. Focusing on only one traffic source and neglecting the sales funnel development might be foolish of you. Be sure to test different traffic generation and conversion methods and measure everything. Focus on building a consistent brand message and reputation, engage with your potential buyers on a personal level, and you will succeed with your digital marketing.

Spend Money to Make Money: Three Areas to Invest When You’re Launching a Business

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

As the old saying goes – you have to spend money to make money in business. And it’s true, if you’re establishing a company from scratch there are lots of overhead costs that you’ll need to cover just to get to the stage where you can open your doors or begin trading online. You have an app and a website to invest in, premises to hire, insurances to cover and stock or materials to buy amongst other things. As a new company who are yet to make any profit, chances are this will be funded using savings or commercial loans, so it’s tempting to want to cut costs and make savings in as many places as possible. However, there are some areas that you simply need to spend the money in – since cutting corners would jeopardize your venture. Here are some examples.

Recruitment

Finding the right staff for your business is absolutely key. These are the people that will keep things running, it’s their day to day tasks that keep your business moving forward and turning a profit. You need the right people for the job, employees who care about the company’s success and are good at their job. You can hire based on experience, or you could hire on potential if you’re happy to train them yourself. But either way, a strong workforce is key to your success and so you need to recruit carefully. Don’t just accept the first applicant that comes your way- don’t be afraid to create aptitude tests or request second or even third interviews. You want employees that are going to stick with you and be productive in their roles.

Software

In modern business, much of the work is done online. The right softwares can make tedious tasks much quicker and easier (meaning you can use your staff to their best potential instead of them being stuck on jobs that a computer could do instead). It also means you can hire less staff in many cases, software can often completely automate some areas of business which will save you money. Using software to do certain tasks means you eliminate human error and stay as productive as possible. While there are all kinds of business softwares out there you can utilize, your best bet is to contact a company offering software development consulting services and have your own custom designed. That way it’s bespoke, it works exactly to your company instead of you having to make workarounds.

Marketing

Chances are you’ve put a lot of effort and research in before starting your business. By the time you launch, you know that you’re offering something that people actually want – and at the right price. However, this simply isn’t enough. You need marketing to get your name out there, competition in business is fierce and you need to be discoverable amongst your more established competitors. Don’t let marketing costs catch you out, they can be expensive but they’re essential.

How Do You Get People Interested In Your Church?

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

Running a church in 2018 can be hard work. It’s difficult to get people interested in going to services, but that’s not necessarily because there are fewer Christians around in our present society. It’s just that the typical church service isn’t exactly geared towards the modern world. Not everybody wants to spend a chunk of their weekend sitting in a crowded room and listening to one person speak. You need to make your church more exciting than that. You need to give it some spark. Here’s how to get people interested in your church.

Digital marketing.

First of all, you need to bring your church into the modern age. And that all starts with a good digital marketing strategy. The best way to reach a large number of people in 2018 is to utilize the internet. That’s where you’ll find potential churchgoers in your area. You might even want to look into a specialist in church web design to help you design a great website. The better the content on your website, the more likely it is that your target audience will find your church’s site on search engines. Google’s algorithms rank websites based on their content.

Stay relevant.

The reason for so many modern churches failing to retain a congregation is that… well, they’re not actually “modern” at all. The world has moved forward, but most churches have been the same for decades and decades. Whilst the Bible and religious teachings might have stayed the same, that doesn’t mean the medium through which they’re taught has to stay the same. Schools have changed with the introduction of new technology and different norms in society, and your church should aim to do the same if you want to get people interested in it.

Younger people want more than the typical Sunday service. That want a chance to engage with people rather than sitting and listening to a lecture. You could start hosting youth meetings at your church; put on activities, bring food, and let everybody congregate so that they can actually talk to one another rather than listening to one person speak. That could make all the difference to keeping your church relevant. And you should also find ways to talk about the importance of Christianity in the modern world. Talk about topics and issues that matter to people in the present day (e.g. mental health, social media, and so on).

Get people involved.

The best way to get people interested in your church is to get them involved. As mentioned in a previous point, it’s hard to get people engaged with a sermon if all they’re doing is listening. You need to invite people to be a part of your church service if you want them to become a part of the congregation. You could encourage people to come up and talk about important topics that mean something to them. Religion should be bonding all of you. This is also a good opportunity to encourage people to invite their family and friends to your service; people will be more likely to come to a church service if their friends and family will be there.

Encourage people to spread the word is a great way to retain existing churchgoers and to draw in new members of the flock. Word-of-mouth marketing is the best way to advertise anything, after all. People trust the recommendations of those closest to them. You might also want to plan some big events so as to give people more of an incentive to give your church a go. If you want to get people involved then you have to give them activities that make it easier to engage with your organization.

Start a youth group.

Another great way to draw in new “young” members of the flock is to start a youth group. As we’ve discussed throughout this article, people want to feel like they’re part of a family or a group of friends when they go to church. Religion is supposed to bring people closer together, after all. One of the best ways to achieve this is to start a youth group. Young people are more likely to embrace religious teachings if they’re in a fun and relaxed environment with their peers. Playing games and going on outings is much more enticing to kids or teens than sitting through a sermon that feels like a school lesson. You’ve got to know your audience if you want to get people interested in your church. It’s just like running a business.

Should Your Business Be Aspirational or Relatable?

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

For the most part, businesses fall into one of two categories: aspirational, or relatable.

Aspirational businesses seek to sell an idea to the general public. They sell a lifestyle; their entire focus is tempting, somewhat luxurious. Their products or services are sold in a way that makes customers want to buy, rather than customers seeking them out because they need to buy.

Relatable businesses are almost the exact opposite. They sell their products and services based on need. They relate to their customers’ existing lives rather than trying to sell them a better, brighter life; they seek improvement rather than replacing.

Almost any product or service can be sold in an aspirational or relatable way.. For example, if you sell luxury soap:

  • Aspirational: “You deserve this soap. Your skin, and your life, will be better if you use this soap. This soap will grant you a touch of luxury during an everyday routine. It’s a treat, a way to care for yourself.”
  • Relatable: “Your life is tough, and it’s nice to have to have a little luxury to cheer you up after a hard day. This soap can be a ray of sunshine that powers you through, ensures your hands are clean, and is kind to your skin at the same time.”

The above text has been somewhat embellished to make the point, but the basic idea is the same: anything can be aspirational or relatable.

Which is better: aspirational or relatable?

Here’s the thing: there is no “right” answer to this question. Both aspirational and relatable services can be incredibly successful; they just represent different approaches.

So why does the decision matter?

If both types of approach can produce a successful business, it’s natural to wonder why you have to ponder this question at all. The answer is simple: the aspirational/relatable choice influences nearly every decision you will make over the course of running your business. For example:

  • As mentioned, marketing choices you make are most influenced by the aspirational/relatable choice. The wording you use, the images, what you’re trying to sell to your customers – they are all governed by this decision. When you have a strong relatable or aspirational vision to take to professional marketing services from Third Angle and similar companies, you will be able to achieve a cohesive campaign that genuinely benefits your company.
  • If you sell products, the packaging you choose is influenced by the aspirational/relatable choice also. For aspirational products, you would use high-end packaging that looks good in a cupboard or on a dressing table; for relatable, you’d keep things more basic and friendly.
  • Your brand’s voice is highly affected by this decision also, encompassing everything from product labelling to how you communicate with customers on social media.

The above areas are just the most obvious areas that are governed by this choice, and are in and of themselves highly significant to the success of your business. While there is no right or wrong decision when contemplating this choice, the fact that you have to make a choice is undeniable.

Whichever you choose, be sure to continually adhere to the same principle throughout every business area. Not only will this help ensure that your business is cohesive across its presentation, but it will also allow you to make quick, concise, on-brand decisions every time.

The Best Features Of An Online Business

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

If you have an online business, there’s a good chance you’re making more money than your neighbor who decided to set up shop on the high street. Maybe you have both a store front and a store page, and integrating the two ideas was the best decision you’ve ever made. Or maybe you just need another push over the edge to convince yourself it’s finally time to get that domain you’ve been debating over. After all, you’ll have a much larger platform to operate off of compared to any kind of traditional business, and the guarantee that at least one customer is always available to you.

So with all those possibilities in mind, here’s a couple of the best features an online business has to offer. They could do a lot for your income, and make a real difference in the opinions of the customers you’re servicing.

It’s Easy and Convenient to Use

And most of all, an online business has easy navigation and convenient reach, and that works for everyone who has an internet connection. So once you’ve got a background theme and picture in mind, make sure your usability is the next thing to get planned out. There’s no point simply looking pretty if someone can’t find their way to a product you’re desperately trying to sell, and you can be sure it’s only going to take a few seconds for them to become frustrated.

Look into some good software companies if you’re stuck for ideas when it comes to integrating a good theme with a layout that’s still straightforward enough for any kind of person on the other side of the screen to use. Accessibility simply expands the market you can make money through, and thus it should be your main priority.

You Can Be Short and Sweet

When it comes to a sales tactic, there’s nothing better than having a couple of sentences in your pocket that really pack a punch. However, when you’re trying this out in store, people are most likely to tell you they don’t need any help! But when online, people are going to be itching to read about your new products and the services you offer.

Be short and sweet with what you say, advertising the most important information someone is going to need to know. If they want to know anything else, there’s always a ‘more’ button they can click, or even an ‘about’ section they can head to. Hey, you’ve included it in your toolbar, your business is going to help sell itself!

Running an online business is going to be as much work as a more traditional model, but it’s also one of the best ways to make sure you’re taking on expansion in the right way and reaching the customer base you wanted to achieve from day one. Business plans change every day after all, so don’t be afraid of revamping your own to include some more modern methods for success!

The Biggest Social Media Marketing Challenges In 2018

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

Everybody knows that social media marketing is one of your best tools because it has such an extensive reach and it allows you to have direct contact with your customers. But there are a lot of misconceptions about social media marketing, one of them being that it’s easier to see a return online than it is using more traditional marketing materials. While it’s true that it can be easier to reach your audience, the sheer amount of competition on social media means that it’s actually a lot harder to see a valuable return than you might realize. There are all sorts of challenges to overcome if you want to build a successful social media campaign, these are just some of them.

Getting Followers

This is obviously step one, and it’s way harder than people realize. People will only follow a page if it has some good content to offer them. That means if you want to build a good following, you have to be putting out good quality stuff all of the time. Luckily, you can use services that will help you find followers, but be very careful. Look at this Crowdfire review for an example of the kind of thing you should be looking for. The software will streamline your page and find relevant followers who may have an interest in your company. However, there are a lot of so called click farms out there who will just use lots of fake accounts to follow you. This might make you look like you’re doing well because it’ll give you a lot of followers but in reality, none of them are real people who might actually consider buying products from you so you’re just wasting your money.

New Algorithms

When social media first started it was simple; if you followed someone then their posts would show up on your newsfeed. But now that everybody has a far high number of followers, social media platforms have introduced algorithms that are selective about what they show and what they don’t. That means your posts aren’t automatically guaranteed to reach people anymore. They’ll only display things that are relevant to the user. That means it’s important to find the right followers because, if they haven’t been viewing anything similar, they won’t get to see your posts either. That means it’s more important than ever to consistently post good content rather than generic marketing messages.

Time Management

Being able to update social media all the time is a bit of a double edged sword. On the one hand, it means that you can constantly push your products and have a good dialogue with your customers. However, it also means that it can easily eat up all of your time if you aren’t careful. Spending all of your time on social media and neglecting other areas of your marketing strategy will seriously damage your attempts to create a good cross platform marketing push, which is vital if you want to spread brand awareness.

Be aware of these social media marketing challenges in the coming months and make sure you don’t get caught out.

A Guide To Spreading Your Brand

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

Achieving success is difficult in such a competitive business landscape. Whilst it’s easier than ever to start a business in this modern age of the internet, that means you’ve got more competitors out there than ever. So what can you do to compete? How can you spread your brand so that you manage to secure potential customers from your target market before your competitors? Here’s a helpful guide to spreading your brand that might just help you reel in the sales you deserve.

Listen to the consumer.

If you want to create a great brand then you need to focus on the people who will buy into that brand: the consumer. It’s not just about what you and your team at the company think makes a visually appealing and accessible brand; you need to find out what consumers are looking for in the next best business. Fill a gap in the market and solve a problem that isn’t yet being solved. Think about what the average consumer wants from a business in your industry and not simply what you want to offer. Most importantly, you need to listen to your existing customers and address their concerns. It’s the mark of a great brand when you’re constantly working to improve and become the company your customers want.

Reach customers in new locations.

One of the best ways to spread your brand is to reach customers in new locations. This has always been the case for any organization wishing to branch out from local to national or national to global and it’s still the case today. Even in the age of digital marketing (which we’ll discuss later), there’s still a place for the old methods of brand awareness. People resonate well with brands in their area. Opening up new premises in a location which is popular with your clients might be a way to better target a portion of your potential market and reel in brand new customers. It helps to expand operations to new places too; you can conduct research into new places more easily.

Of course, opening new branches is only one way to reach customers in new locations. You could think about smaller ways to make an impact on potential customers in the real world. You could even look into tradeshow displays as a captivating way to showcase your brand. Whether you’re promoting your company in a shopping mall or a business convention, don’t underestimate the power of placing an enticing piece of brand imagery in a physical location. The traditional forms of marketing still have some influential power over consumers in all manner of markets. We don’t spend all of our time locked in our rooms and browsing the internet; some people still venture out into the real world.

Improve your digital marketing campaign.

One final way to spread your brand that’s been briefly mentioned already is digital marketing. There’s no denying how important it is for your brand to have an online presence in the modern age. People use the internet for so much of their shopping, whether that involves luxury purchases or simply getting their groceries delivered directly to their homes on a weekly basis. If your business isn’t utilizing the internet then it’s missing an opportunity to spread its brand in a cost-effective but efficient manner. You need to make sure you optimize your website’s content with relevant keywords and responsive design so as to ensure it ranks well on search engines, for example.

Do What All The Millennials Do: Make Your Business A Success

Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links

It seems we can’t go anywhere these days without hearing about some form of success story when it comes to business. Millennials creating smartphone applications that take over the world, becoming digital pioneers in a fast-paced and ever changing business environment, ad literally thriving not just driving under the overwhelming pressure. It certainly seems to be the inspiration for many others to follow suit as more business are being started up each day and with the promise of the a new year in full flow, now is often one of the most popular times to do it. But how do you ensure that your idea becomes a success? I wanted to share with you some of the things to consider to ensure that your business gets off the ground.

Having the right support in place

One thing you have got to consider when going into business or starting up on your own is having the right level of support around you. You may be an expert in your field and industry, know the service you provide inside out or the product you have created like the back of your hand, but you can’t always be the expert in every aspect of running a business. A good entrepreneur knows when they need extra guidance or support. That might mean computer network support where you have a company take care of things like cloud storage or handle your systems if things don’t go to plan. It might mean outsourcing to a digital agency who can come up with striking social media strategies or help your website be seen amongst the sea of other competitors out there. Choosing your support network is vital, as there will be areas that you can control yourself.

Knowing exactly what you want to do and how you want to achieve it

It is also important for you to know exactly what you want to do with your business model and how you plan on achieving it. This is how you can then strategize your business moves to ensure that you get your business to where it needs to be. This is the time to work out a business plan, know exactly how you plan on financing each move and then being open to ideas and change because business can be a very fast-paced environment and it’s important to ensure that you can also be flexible.

Embracing digital services

It’s now more important than ever that any new business embraces the world of digital. More is heading online these days and with consumer behaviors changing, it’s important that a business honors that and makes changes or at least gives customers the option. A decent website, being present on social media and ensuring that you have a decent marketing campaign could be the key to success.

A lot has to do with work ethic and attitude

Finally, while a lot has to do with how you make your business work you can’t forget that the only way it is going to happen is through hard work and dedication. Your attitude to your business and to life itself needs to be proactive and positive. Hard work will get you places.