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Category Archives: Marketing

Tips for Promoting Your Business on Social Media

Promoting your business on social media can either have great results, or can be a complete flop. Your result depends on the kind of efforts and techniques you use to promote your business. The five tips below will help you successfully promote your business on social media, so you don’t have to watch your efforts fall short.

The Correct Social Media
The first and most important aspect about promoting your business is choosing the correct social media websites. Targeting the sites that reach your intended audience the most is the optimal option. Some social media sites are more appealing to a certain gender, and certain social media websites do better with different kinds of content, like images, text, or website links.

Valuable, relevant content.
After figuring out which social media websites will do your marketing aspiration the most good, then it’s time to work on posting valuable, and relevant content that is worthy of being shared with the rest of the world. If you can post content that is valuable to your readers they will want to follow your page to get similar content in the future. If the content is relevant to your business niche, then it will be that much easier to gain authority for your business’s online presence.

Updates
While having valuable, relevant content is one of the most important aspects about promoting your business on social media, having consistent updates is just as important. With posts full of helpful information for your consumers, they will be looking forward to more posts, which means if you forget about your social media account and only post on random days once or twice a month, no one will really care about the trickle of information you provide on an inconsistent basis. It is best if your followers don’t have time to forget who you are. Posting frequently during the start is the perfect way to build a base of followers, then over time reduce your posts to once or twice a week if you feel comfortable doing so.

Freebies
Followers love free things. Free samples, free information or almost anything free. This is a great tool for running promotions. Offer a product free for 24 hours through your social media site and your ratings will increase overnight, so to speak. However, when providing freebies, make sure they are useful freebies, providing something of very low value for free is not going to help your business, you want to use the opportunity to show off your quality work.

Show and Tell (but mostly show)
For those scrolling through their social media accounts, they can pass hundreds of posts in minutes. So, what causes someone to stop and actually look at something? A catchy graphic. The more images you have that can catch someone’s attention, who is just scrolling through, the better your business will fare. A lot of times the graphic can even have the words you would normally just write up in the post on the image instead. If it looks good, it’s more likely to make someone stop to look at it.

With these tips you can start promoting your business and watch as your online presence grows.

How to Create a Successful Business Blog

It is absolutely impossible to compete in today’s ultra competitive business environment without an online presence that your customers can find, engage with, and learn quite a bit more about your company and your products or services without you having to do any of the heavy lifting all day long.

Thankfully, blog technology today (namely the open source blog technology WordPress that powers nearly 50% of all websites today) makes it really easy to set up an online company blog and build your business from the ground up with next to no real resources – at least from a monetary standpoint.

You just have to be really smart and really savvy about how you go about setting up your business blog so that you can cash in on your efforts, rather than burn out and coming for a crash landing when you find out people aren’t anywhere near as excited about what you have to offer as he thought they might have been.

Here are some tips and tricks to help you really hit the ground running with your new business blog!

Understand your audience

A lot of people (including some pretty smart and savvy business owners and entrepreneurs) start their business blog building journey in exactly the wrong spot – looking for web designers that can create something flashy as opposed to figuring out EXACTLY what their audience wants and then giving them that and nothing else.

You see, on the web today – with so many different choices, so many different websites to visit, and so many different businesses all competing for the exact same customers – content is everywhere.

You really have to drill down into understanding exactly what your customers want most so that you can give them exactly that, cutting through the noise in your market and building a real relationship with them.

Perfect your persona

The other thing that you really have to master when building up your business blog is to take the time to create a business persona that you are going to project onto your market – almost like a character, if you will – that really resonates with your ideal prospects expectations as well.

There’s a reason why people have absolutely no trouble whatsoever believing that Indian a Jones could be both a treasure hunter digging through tombs and a Harvard professor – and that’s because of the costuming and the persona that he projects depending upon his circumstances and environment.

What you’re going to want to do is understand that your business blog is a business tool first and foremost, and because they’re so much content out there you need to create a business persona and character that resonates with your customer. Find out who they’d like to interact with most and write your posts from that perspective.

Court controversy and market like crazy

At the end of the day, you’re always going to have a tough time debating against a flood of free information that pours into the Internet on a daily basis – unless of course you are willing to court controversy and market your business blog like crazy.

Don’t be shy about alienating anyone (ANYONE) that isn’t your ideal prospect and likely to give you money, and make sure that you market and advertise your business blog just as aggressively as your products and services.

Millennial Entrepreneurs in Asia

The businessmen and women of generation Y are determined to strike out on their own. Choosing to forego a standard “9 – 5” job for a chance to make their own startup is becoming a trend for Millennials everywhere.

The Entrepreneur Spirit
It’s clear that the entrepreneurial spirit has taken off all over the world. The Forbes’ 30 under 30 lists cite CEO’s of new startups that are making a huge impact all around the globe. From startups in the US to the Millennial entrepreneur in Asia, this generation has been bit by the business bug and there’s no turning back now.

Curiously, in the studies conducted with entrepreneurs in Asia, researchers find that the Millennials of Gen Y are more interested in pursuing their passion and goals than actually making a huge profit with their companies. This mindset is concurrent with the shift of graduates foregoing the corporate lifestyle for one that is set by their own rules.

Is Passion Enough?
Many individuals, like the candidates on the Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list, often risk a great deal to pursue their start up. To some it may seem illogical that a mother of two would sell their home to fund a passion project, but does it work? Well, for Ha Lam, pursuing her “passion project” worked wonders. Her company Triip.me now plans local tours in over 600 cities throughout the world.

Some skeptics, however, still look to Millennial entrepreneurs as delusional and quickly reiterate the statistic that only 10% of startups actually make it big. To skeptics, passion is a silly reason to risk it all. What the skeptics don’t realize is the fact that passion is always at the heart of any kind of innovation.

Passion over Profit
In Asia and other parts of the world, many individuals that have had success with their startups and businesses say that it takes a lot of work, but equal parts passion. In fact, passion is the key to success for startups that succeed.

In a world of Internet startups, established corporations, and thousands of new businesses, entrepreneurs that are just in it for the profit may become quickly discouraged. Contrastingly, highly passionate individuals that thoroughly believe in their new business realize that passion gives their entrepreneurial drive an inhuman strength of sorts. For this generation, the will to truly succeed and the will to push through is not profit based, and it’s working out just fine.

Entrepreneurial Uncertainty
Considering all the risk that is involved with most startups, a Millennial entrepreneur in Asia, and anywhere else in the world, faces a lot of uncertainty. For individuals that choose the path of pursuing their startup idea or small business plan, the future often seems daunting and financially unstable.

Nevertheless, with the use of the Internet and the path left by millions of successful startups that have made it big over the past few years, new entrepreneurs are making the startup jump every day, despite the financial uncertainty.

At the end of the day, for most Millenials, putting passion over financial stability and profit makes all the sense in the world. Having a successful business to call their own is the best financial security of all.

Importance of a Business Plan for Entrepreneurs

When it comes to working on a startup one of the most important things you’ll need before beginning a business is a business plan. Especially as an entrepreneur, the entire future of your business will be riding on your business plan and without one, you could see failure faster than you could imagine. Below are just some of the largest reasons as to why developing a business plan is essential.

Learning More About Your Idea

Everyone can have the idea of opening a business and you can think of the general aspects of creating a company, but when you take the time to go through a business plan you can get a better feel for what you’re trying to achieve. It’s simple to sit down and say that you want to sell baked goods for a living, but you’ll learn much more about the different types of baked goods, the types of customers you’ll be targeting, and the general purpose of your business once you establish a plan.

Setting and Achieving Goals

It’s also important to consider setting up a business plan so you know where you want your company to be 5 or 10 years down the road. When you open for business it’s easy to lose track of the things that you actually want to accomplish, such as moving into a larger space or opening several different chains for your bakery. When you make a business plan you can outline the small and large goals that you want to accomplish over your years of being a business owner so you can stick to your plan and become the most successful business person you can be.

Avoiding Common Mistakes

There’s nothing better than being able to write things down on paper as you’ll have everything you need right in front of your eyes. By taking the time to develop a business plan you won’t have to worry about making common mistakes that are quintessential to most new business owners. You’ll be able to account for any confounds and develop solutions for potential issues you might face in the future.

Raising Funds

It’s important to note that the majority of people that are interested in investing in your venture won’t do so without a business plan presented to them. When you develop a plan it shows investors that you know what you want to do, how you’re going to do it, and be able to show them how it’s going to benefit them. There are hundreds of things that should be included in your business plan ranging from the size of your market to the funding requirements that you’ll need. It’s also important that you include financial projections so your investors can know how much of a return they can expect.

Pleasing Lending Institutions

You might find that in the event you can’t find investors or you don’t have enough cash for the start up, you’ll have to rely on lending institutions such as banks. You can guarantee that a bank will not give you a business loan if you don’t have a sufficient business plan in place. You’ll easily be able to get your funding when your business is it the stable stages of planning.

Saving Tips For Start Up Business

Simply put, it is a well-known fact that start-ups have it rough. From finding the right talent to getting funding and building a business in a competitive atmosphere, long nights, hard decisions, and dedication stand between you and your dreams. More often then not, the biggest problem start ups have is funding. Lets take a moment to review saving tips for start up businesses. In particular, we will look at what you can do before beginning your start up, while you are working in your start up, and ideas for saving money in the future.

tips and bulb symbol - text with sign in flat design web icon, business support concept

1. Before You Begin

Prior to beginning your start up, try to save as much money as possible. Bring together your free assets, wealth, and other sources that can be pooled together. Every dollar you save now means being able to last longer once the process begins. In addition, take this opportunity to look at your current funds and create a shoe string budget. You will want to spend as little as possible until you are well established, meaning that things like rental space should be kept to a minimum size to serve your needs. Also, keep the equipment you need to a minimum as well. Don’t go overboard when it comes to decking out your space and instead focus on only what you need. As a final consideration, carefully choose the type of business you want to form. Everything simpler then a limited liability company will put you at increased risk if the business goes belly up.

2. While Your Business Is In Start-Up Mode

Never stop revising your business plans. This will keep your goals, directives, and spending in line with how your business currently is doing. Make sure that when business agreements are made that every agreement is put into writing and that you have a copy of it. The last thing you want to do is find yourself in a costly argument about who said what. Also, know the legal status of your workers and stay on top of taxes. While this may take some time on your part, it will ensure that everything is by the books, limiting risk on your end. As a final cost saving suggestion, re-use shipping materials. Depending on the nature of your business, you may be spending a lot on shipping materials that you have in house. Why spend when you can re-use?

3. Considerations For Saving In the Future

Stick to what you know, learn what you do not, and hire what you cannot do. The sooner you figure out your limitations in these regards, the happier and more effective you will be at starting a business and saving money. When it comes to hiring professional help, take the time to look for good people. More then anything else, you will need to rely on these people and be able to get along with them if and when an emergency comes up. Also, consider bartering services with other small companies. This way you can keep things relatively cheap without having to involve money directly.

Reasons Why Your Business Needs A Marketing Plan

The 21st century has brought about a revolution in how companies effectively market themselves to new consumers. As older and dated techniques loose their predictability in models, newer techniques that utilize social media platforms as well as other creative marketing techniques have come to take their place. With so many available options, it may seem like your business does not require a marketing plan, especially when some of the marketing options available to you are without cost. Lets take a moment to discuss why regardless of any consideration, your business will need a marketing plan to survive.

Word Cloud with Marketing Plan related tags

1. Marketing Is Necessary Regardless Of Size, Flexibility, Or Time

Regardless of the size, companies can benefit from having a marketing plan. In fact, this is so true that companies that range the gambit in size and organization can all utilize marketing plans and strategies to increase their brand awareness. In addition to size, many people do not consider a marketing plan necessary because they see their company as flexible. While it may be true that your company can quickly and effectively react to your consumer’s needs, being unable to reach them will mean that despite your flexibility little is gained. Finally, there is the consideration of time. More often then not (and especially for small businesses with limited personnel) marketing is seen as ancillary to the true work at hand. In order for your business to succeed, you need to make the time and have the direction to create a marketing plan.

2. It Keeps You Task Oriented And Directed Towards Goals

When creating a marketing plan, you have ample opportunity to rethink the various strategies that underlie your business. The time spent on this can not only help you rethink your strategy, but also create direction with your overarching goals. Your marketing goals can then help to empower these goals, making your goals into a reality.

3. A Necessary Step For Obtaining Financing

More often then not, before a bank or other investor provides money, you will have to have a strategy for how your business will succeed in the current marketplace. This includes having a marketing plan designed around a firm understanding of who your consumers are and how you can reach them.

4. Help To Determine Target Customer, Marketing Strategy, And Niche

Creating a marketing plan helps to identify who your target customer is, where your niche is, and what the best kind of marketing strategy will work to highlight your brand. By creating a consumer profile, you can specifically target populations where your message will have the greatest effect, increasing profits as a result.

5. Will Provide A Breakdown For Budget

How much will your marketing plan cost and how much money do you have to spend on marketing. The final reason why your business needs a marketing plan is because you need to know how much money makes sense to put into marketing your product. Without this information, you are either wasting money or wasting potential. Neither is good for your company.

8 Tips for First Time Entrepreneurs

Taking that crazy jump and becoming an entrepreneur for the first time, is both terrifying and exciting. It takes a certain kind of person to succeed, but there are definitely some tips you can use to help you along the way.

men and women entrepreneurs with signs that say I love my Job

  1. Take Risks

Becoming an entrepreneur in the first place requires a considerable amount of risk. However, you are only going to encounter more and more risk taking as you build up your empire. You should embrace risks, and look forward to thrill of something working out.

  1. Keep an Idea Journal

Sometimes the best ideas will come to you at the most inappropriate moments, such as sitting having Sunday dinner with your parents. While you may not be able to excuse yourself to begin planning straight away, you can take a couple of seconds to jot it down. Even if you look back at it later and think it’s a ridiculous idea, it may provide you with some inspiration.

  1. Network

This pretty much goes without saying, but it’s the way you do it that’s important. It’s not just the big wigs that you need to get on your good side. You should also be looking to build connections with your peers, try to meet other entrepreneurs and business owners on your level, discuss ideas with them and help each other out from time to time. Once your established, take some time out to help others just starting out, they may be able to repay the favour one day.

  1. Stick to Your Guns

It’s important to listen to the advice of people that have been there and done it. However, they won’t always be right. It’s important that you stick to your instincts. You are the only person that will be able to make your business flourish. All the final decisions will be down to you, so make sure you listen to yourself as much as you listen to others.

  1. Brand Yourself

It’s enough to brand your business, you also need to brand yourself. Everything you do and say will reflect on your business exploits so make sure you represent yourself in a marketable way.

  1. Keep on Learning

Every day is an opportunity for you to learn something new, and you should actively pursue this. Entrepreneurship is all about solving problems and learning as you go along. You should constantly be aiming be better yourself and in turn better your business.

  1. Read, Read, Read

Dedicate a few hours a day to reading up on anything and everything you are interested in. Reading doesn’t have to mean getting musty old textbooks out from the library. In this day and age you need to keep ahead of the times, so keep on top of any relevant blogs, magazines and newspapers. Also, it’s important to allow yourself some time to read for fun.

  1. Eat Healthily

One final tip. To keep your mind sharp, you need to keep your body sharp, so try to eat a healthy balanced diet and take regular exercise. You are definitely going to need some extra energy.

 

Singapore’s Internet Connections Are One Of The Best In The World

High Speed Internet - Measuring Web Traffic or Statistics
 
Who has the best Internet in the world?  The answer may surprise you.  There are many characteristics that can be used to define the best Internet, including connectivity, download rates, upload rates, coverage, penetration, and providers.  For a closer look at how all of these come together, lets take a look at Singapore.

With more then 5.4 million people in this modern day city-state, Singapore rests on the southern tip of a large landmass in Southeast Asia.  With an incredibly high density, the majority of Singapore residents live inside the city, which itself is based on a series of islands.  Known as the Lion City, Singapore has helped to bring about superior Internet connections through its small size and history of dedicated Internet coverage.

History Of Internet In Singapore

Before the Internet came to Singapore, Singapore helped to create its own Internet.  Launching a proto-Internet, Singapore used this network for academic ad governmental use, mirroring in many ways how the Internet would eventually come into play.  This changed however in 1994, when Singapore connected to the Internet and began creating the networks that would soon help define it as one of the best in the world.  While not happening all at once, Singapore has gradually added to the integrity of its Internet lines, slowly producing one of the most comprehensive and inclusive Internet infrastructures in the entire world.

Ranking Singapore’s Internet

Simply put, Singapore has one of the best Internet connections in the world.  It has the greatest broadband and Internet penetration rates seen in any country in the world.  In addition to this, Singapore has remarkable download rates as well.  Of all the countries in the world, Singapore frequently finds itself at or near the top of the list in several different criteria.  Recently ranked 10th in average Internet speed, Singapore has also been ranked 22nd best in connection speed in past surveys.  No matter how you look at it, Singapore’s Internet and underlying infrastructure is strong, robust, and changing with the needs of modern business and use.  How is all of this made possible?

Nationwide Coverage

As briefly mentioned twice before, the secret to Singapore’s success is infrastructure as well as a set of policies designed around making this infrastructure fantastic.  Singapore ONE, a provider on Internet in the country is available nation wide.  There are a total of 5 Internet providers in this city-state, allowing for incredible versatility in choice and providing no opportunity for a dominating monopoly, as seen in places like the United States.  Another thing to consider when looking at Singapore’s excellent Internet connection is the Island wide 3.5G mobile and wireless Internet access.  Providing coverage for people no matter where they are in this densely packed country, every resident with the proper equipment can go online and find the information they need.  As a result, Singapore has one of the best Internet infrastructures in the entire world, supported by a population that relies on it every day.

 

 

What Successful Companies Have In Common

Group of business people working
 
Accounting for 12.5 trillion dollars in revenue, Fortune 500 companies do an incredible amount of business.  With individual companies rivaling in production and sales that of small nations, successful companies are incredible to behold.  So, what makes a successful company successful?  Lets take a look at five things that these companies has in common.

 

  1. The Ability To Determine A Goal

The ability to determine a goal for the company and move forward is central to the success of any business, and absolutely critical to any start-up looking to go big.  At the beginning, developing a goal in which to shape a company around is crucial for determining the branding, direction, philosophy, and even market for sales.  As the business gradually develops over time and takes in a wider selection of clients and possible services, long-term goals have to be re-evaluated and set in order to continue the company on the right direction.  When this process falls apart and a company is no longer capable of determining a successful goal, then the company will quickly be overcome by its competition.

 

  1. A Fantastic Team

The company is only as good as the people employed by it.  A perfect example of this is Steve Jobs and Apple.  While Steve Jobs was capable of bringing this company into a leading role producing incredible sales, all of this would not be possible without the work and dedication of the hundreds of people working under Steve Jobs who make this possible.  As a result, attracting top talent is incredibly important for forming a competent team and this talent should be selected using criteria from your determined goals.  The better the values of the team match that of the company, the more productive the overall relationship will be and the more successful the company.

 

  1. Decide On A Market

The best team, the most concise goals, and the best product will do nothing without a clear understanding of marketing.  Beginning with the creation of an ideal client that represents who you are selling to, successful companies spend a great deal of time on intelligent marketing.  Along with having a passion and knowledge regarding the market, a leading company will be able to clearly and effectively address an issue and create a product that solves it.  In addition, the ability to decide on a particular market means being better equipped to provide assistance to customer problems, creating a strong user base from day one.

 

  1. The Capability To Raise Capital When Required

Especially for start-ups, being able to raise capital when required means the difference between growing and being stymied.  In addition, expanding pre-existing operations at the right time will give successful companies a boost, requiring the correct financial records and diligent team of accountants.

 

  1. Being Able To Adapt To Change

The final thing that helps to make a successful company is the company’s ability to adapt to change.  Kodak serves as the perfect example of a company that was unable to adapt to the change in digital cameras and suffered as a result.  The Lego Company however proves a counter point having been able to successfully re-imagine the goal of their business to more accurately and directly target their customers while keeping prices down.

 

Types of Advertising

In the current world, most of the businesses have succeeded because of using advertisement as a business tool. Advertisement is a form of communication, which is used to persuade, manipulate, or encourage the customers to buy your products or services. Some of the examples of advertisement used to attract the attention of the public are: broadcast, print, and electronic media. The main objective of the different types of the methods of advertisement is to make the public to be aware of the new products or services, which are being offered in the market. In addition, it informs the audience on the quality of the products or services as well as persuading them to make use of the services offered or buy these products.

A good advertisement should have a great impact on the sale of the products. This is the reason why most of the companies spent a lot of money in the advertisement of their goods and services.

One of the benefits of the advertisement is that people get inform of the different products and services , their cost, utilities and other requirements. Nevertheless, it entice the customers to purchase what they are selling. A very effective advertisement is able to large number of potential customers. Moreover, they make positive impact on the products and services being offered. Advertisement is also able to create a brand name of the new product. Hence, making people recognize the product and get attracted to it because of the catchy advertisement. In addition to that, you will get direct feedback from customers about the products or services, which they have received. As a result, customers will have personal opinions of the products or services after viewing it. These opinions are significant since it will assist in improving the products or services so that it can allow it to better the needs of the customers.

Disadvantages of advertisement

Advertisement is very expensive. In fact, companies have to spend a lot of money doing the advertisement. This is a liability to the companies when the advertisement is not effective when promoting the products or services of the company. However, most of the firms try to offset the cost of the advertisement by setting the prices of the goods to be high or through surcharges. This will result in lower sales volume as few customers will buy the products or services because of its cost.

Examples of the advertisement

The following are some of the examples of the form of advertisement, which are used by most of the companies:

· Print advertisement

This is one of the types of advertisement, which is mostly used. The examples of this form of advertisement include magazine, newspaper, and newsletter. The advantages of these form of advertisement includes: there is a royal leadership as compared to the advertisement which is made on the internet, companies are able to choose the advertising space as it will assist in keeping the cost within the budget.

 

Even though print advertisement is the best, there are some limitations. The advertisement may be expensive. In addition, there is limited number of targeted audience. Customers have to also plan months in advance so that they can advertise.

· Guerilla advertisement

This is a form of advertisement, which is easy to implement and not expensive.

Some of the limitations are: it is time consuming, requires great level of commitment and it is not the best method for risk takers.

· Broadcast advertisement

This is another type of advertisement, which has the ability to create a lasting impact on the audience. With this form of advertisement, companies will get mass coverage and viewers will take time out during the commercials. Disadvantages of this method of advertisement includes: the method is very expensive and inability to contain detailed information of the product or service due to limited airtime.

· Billboard advertisement (outdoor advertisement)

This is the best form of advertisement since it is able to catch the attention of the public. Before using this form of advertisement, companies should give out the message, which is brief and precise. The limitation of the method of advertisement is the fact that it is very expensive.

· Online advertisement

The form of advertisement is beneficial since it is not expensive. The benefits of this type of advertisement are: it only requires a pc (trouble free) and it is able to reach the global market. However, there is an additional cost of hiring a professional to update the online advertisement. Moreover, it requires IT knowledge.