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Facebook marketing is important because there are over 1.11 billion people using Facebook. There is no question that you need to have your own Facebook page. Today, simply having a page doesn’t quite cut it for Facebook marketing.
Sure, having that basic page gives you the benefits of having an actual web presence. But, there are certain steps that can take your page and elevate it from average to amazing.
So without further ado:
1. Tell Them What You Are About
People are coming to your page to find out more about what is going on with your eCommerce Business. Don’t be afraid to hold back- talk about your product inspirations, show short videos of your product creation in action. And maybe even reveal a few your products “secrets.” Everyone wants to know the magic that goes on behind the website. So go ahead, indulge them a little.
2. Be Visual
Cliché as it may be, a picture really does speak 1,000 words. Posting eye popping pictures can bring to life the touch and feel of what you offer. There is no better way to peak someone’s interest and get that itch to purchase something than an image. And you don’t have to limit yourself to purely product pics, you can also post cute things that your customers might enjoy as much as you do!
3. Spark their Interest
Show your customers that you are more than an online store, that you are also a friend who is creative and fun. Of course you are a business that ultimately aims to make money, but being overly promotional can be a turnoff. Try to create a good mix of special offers, promotions, customer engagement, playfulness, etc.
It’s okay to even poke fun of yourself every now and then. It lets people know that you are human too and actually can work wonders for your brand! Another great way to promote yourself is to actually take a step back and let others do it for you.
Nothing is more authentic that good old fashion word of mouth marketing. Check out our post on word of mouth or referral marketing. By interacting with your customers, listening and treating them well you can form relationships. Those relationships will secure these customers as your loyal fans. If they are excited about your online store, they’ll be pumped to spread the word.
4. Facebook Marketing Means: Be Available and Respond to Reviews
Reviews are a natural part of the business and even though they aren’t always positive, it is vital to your success that you respond. People are looking to see that you care and are willing to work hard to gain their patronage. If someone says something negative, try to look at is an opportunity to reach out and address his or her issue. And hey, if someone says you’re great, it’s always important to respond to that as well. Acknowledge their praise with appreciation and mutual admiration.
5. Share Your Accomplishments
Receiving good press is always a pleasure to see. You’ve worked hard to go above and beyond and get those reviews so don’t be shy to share the positive news! Your fans will be just as elated as you are to see that your accomplishments are not going unnoticed. There is also no denying that all of the publicity coming your way will spread the word about your place and keep that buzz going.
6. Be Socially Active
Social applications can be promoted on your Facebook page
Show that you are modern and up-to-speed by having a Twitter, an Instagram and a blog. Not only are these good ways to connect with your customers, but it’s also a good way to follow and be followed. You can get a look at what they like, while sparking their interest for your place at the same.
Twitter can help out with those short and special promotional offers that will inform your customers of certain specials and events going on. Just as mentioned in #3, Instagram is great for getting those enticing product pics out there for the world to fantasize over. And all of these social applications can be promoted on your Facebook page.
7. Be Consistent
Make sure all of your posts are accurate and inline with what goes on inside your online store. Now that you are armed with all of your social media weapons (Twitter, Instagram, blog, Facebook), it is important that the information you are putting out is not contradictory to any of the other posts you have created. Post frequently. I know it can be a little overwhelming at first, but set up a schedule and be consistent so that your fans know what to expect and have something to look forward to.
This is brought to you by www.NiftyCart.com – “Your Easy, Complete, Customer Centric, Online Store That Scales With You” Check out our 15 Day Free trial!
Use These 5 Email Receipt Marketing Tactics to Get More Sales
By Nicholas Hurd
People involved in email marketing frequently overlook the email receipt. Every time someone makes a purchase from your store they get an email receipt.
You can use it as an amazing way to connect with your customers—but it’s frequently forgotten as a marketing opportunity.
You may be missing out on sales if you are not taking advantage of the marketing opportunity the sales receipt presents.
In this post, let’s look at how you can use the footer text on your email receipts as part of your marketing strategy. Use it to win additional sales, and get connected with your customers.
What’s Your Email Receipt Missing?
Compared to the average opening rate of 17.19% for regular email marketing, email receipts have an open rate of 70.90%. The email receipts you already send your customers are a potential E-commerce gold mine. It deserves to be treated as such.
Remember – You Have Your Customer’s Trust
You need to remember when a customer completes a checkout on your store, you have built their trust. They have already acted like they are committed to your product and brand.
When your customer opens their email receipt, you can use that time to do several things:
Add an Upsell to promote related products or even different products
Provide a coupon code to get your customer to return for a future purchase
Set up a feedback loop to better understand your customers and your checkout flow
Add social links to get your customers to follow you on Facebook, Twitter, etc.
Provide a links so your customers can tweet about or share their purchase on Facebook
And many more opportunities to promote your store
Even companies outside of the E-commerce space are using their email receipts as part of their marketing.
Uber gives their riders a fabulous product experience, and after the ride they utilize their email receipts to enhance their marketing by:
Having you rate your customer experience
Letting their riders give immediate feedback on the ride
Offering a referral bonus if you share with your friends
Here we will explore some specific E-commerce email receipt tactics you can start implementing today to capture your lost sales.
Use Email Receipts to Upsell Related or Even Different Products
Many of the big players in the E-commerce space have using this promotion tactic for a sometime.
For example, as long ago as 2006 Amazon, reported that 35% of its revenues resulted from cross selling and up selling. A substantial portion of that was generated through email receipts.
Incorporate a product up sell in your email receipt to see if there is an increase in orders.
Here a couple examples of ways you can use a upsell in your email receipts:
Add an upsell for a related product
Sell accessories for the product they just purchased
2. Entice a Future Purchase by Offering a Discount Code
By offering a discount code in your receipt email, you’re offering an incentive for the customer to come back and make another purchase.
Emails that contain a discount coupon code get an even higher response.
Even if the discount of 5% or $1 off the next order generates more interest. Apparently, savings are savings—and consumers think that any savings, no matter how small, are good.
Something else you want to consider about coupons is they are a great promotional tool. And, they have numerous uses. For example, use them to:
Track sales resulting from your online & offline campaigns
Offer your customers time-limited discounts to encourage them to make another purchase
Your Social Media Accounts Need Attention
More then 2/3 of business leaders plan to integrate social media and email marketing operations was mentioned in a study by MarketingProfs.
Here’s how you can do it, it’s very simple. Add links to your social accounts in the footer of your email receipt. It’s that easy!
Here are some other ideas you can use to implement social media in your email receipt.
Get 5% off your next order if you share with 5 friends
Take $1 off your next order when you refer one of your friends
Save 20% off your next order if you refer a friend and they purchase something
As you can probably imagine, the variations on these themes are quite large. You should consider tests a number of different strategies. From your tests, you can determine which options produce results and which ones don’t.
4. Your Paying Customers Will Give You Feedback Quickly
Paying customers are a valuable resource when it comes to providing feedback promptly from your email receipts. Many restaurants and retailers are doing this and have been for some time. Frequently, you’ll find a survey, that if you complete it, you are entered in a contest to win some prize. In the case of a restaurant, for example, this might be a free appetizer or desert.
You should consider this for your online store.
You will get some understanding of the way your store operates. In addition, you will gain awareness of pain points your customers may have suffered in your store’s checkout process.
Consider the following, and other similar questions, to develop feedback from your customers:
What was your overall impression of the process?
Did you think the price was reasonable?
How did you find our store? Was it a search engine, referral, or something else?
How long do you think it will be until you receive your purchase?
When do they expect the product to be delivered?
Do you have any suggestions on how we can improve the checkout process?
Suggest That Your Customers Share What They Purchased on Twitter and Facebook
Most people find that shopping makes them feel good. Some research into shopping showed that shopping activated certain key areas of the brain. Those areas of the brain are linked to lifting moods and triggering release of brain chemicals called dopamine. Dopamine elevates your mood and puts you into a happy state.
You can take advantage of this “happy state” the dopamine has created with your email receipts.
While your customer is in this dopamine created “happy state”, urge your customer to share what they purchased on Facebook. And, suggest that they tweet their purchase to their Twitter followers.
In a previous post, we discussed the power of referral marketing. If you add this to your email receipt your customers will find it very easy to refer their friends.
5 Internet Marketing Tactics You Can Use To Increase Traffic & Sales
By Nicholas Hurd
If increased visitors and sales are important to you, then these Internet Marketing tactics are for you. Getting more Internet traffic usually means sales. If you haven’t done so already you need to tune your SEO to get more visitors from search. In addition, your Internet marketing should include a presence in social media that is tailored to keep you in the top of search results.
Being at the top of search engine results is just not enough for your site to sell for you and make money. You need to generate buzz and let happy customers generate traffic for you. Word of Internet on social media is the new word-of-mouth and this makes every client that buys from you a potential salesperson that you do not have to pay.
The following five tactics have been proven to increase traffic to your website or social media page and will generate sales. You have to have a product or service that people want. These tactics in and of themselves will not sell poor quality.
You must have done all of your homework to identify your market. It does not matter if you are going local or seeking a niche, these tactics will not work unless you do the market analysis so that you know who to target with these methods that will increase your traffic and sales.
Automated Email Campaigns
This is simply the modern version of the ad mailers that are still being used to get people interested in a business, a product, or a service. You need to understand that interest precedes sales. Getting people interested in your business is what automated email campaigns do for you.
The trick to success with this tactic is not to overdo. If you bombard the same people with the same message you will end up losing clients because they do not want the aggravation of constant sales emails that they consider to be spam.
This is where you market research comes in. If you know the demographics of your target market then you can refine any email list to be more productive in making sales.
A strong headline is crucial to getting your emails opened. If they aren’t opened your message will never be seen.
Your emails have to be different from your competition. Graphic content, coloring of verbiage, and photos of products you have specials on are ways to get attention that sells.
If you don’t already have an auto-responder program on you computer there are several options available.
If you have a WordPress blog there are plugins that will perform the task for you, like MailPoet. These plugins are free and usually have a “Pro” version for an additional fee.
Auto-responder services, like Aweber, Mail Chimp, Getresponse, and Constant Contact that provide a way to manage your email lists and send automated emails.
The advantages of the auto-responder services are they:
Monitor addresses they send mail from to ensure they are NOT blacklisted
Can automate the process of moving a person from one email list to another
Have tools that can help you analyze how your email campaigns are doing
Run a Contest
People like to win “free” stuff. Every casino in the world makes money by having contests and so can you. To use this Internet marketing tactic, you do not have to give away the moon and stars to attract new clients. Do the simple thing. Give away one of your more appealing and more expensive products.
You give away what you sell or make because that gets people talking. Anyone that wins something is bound to brag about winning and that means they are a premiere salesperson for your business.
Using an email campaign that includes a contest is one way to employ two tactics at the same time that will increase traffic to your business.
Have a Strong Call to Action
People need a push to take action. As a business owner you already know this because you often have to push your staff to get the best from them.
This same simple idea works for getting more people to buy once they visit your site and it works extremely well in increasing traffic.
The idea is to nudge your clients or prospective clients into buying from you without producing any fear in them. The most effective fear elimination tools are free trials, no obligation statements, and a sense of urgency.
You create convenience and a sense of urgency by having a button to click right beside the call to action. You want the color of the button to be eye-catching and it should be large enough to appear almost irresistible.
A call to action, regardless of how well worded or how strong, is utterly useless unless your client actually gets something from their effort. This simply means that you have to prepare to be able to deliver on what you say you can. If you cannot deliver then, do not lose clients by saying that you can.
Use Live Chat on Your Website
People love to talk. Part of the need to talk is that no one listens to most people. You can take advantage of the need to talk by having live chat on your website.
You should use live chat in two ways on your website. One way is to let customers talk about your product or service. Again, this is simply letting your client sell for you.
The second reason you want live chat is immediate customer service. If a client can drop into a chat room and has any problem with your product or service attended to in minutes then you just made a convert that will not only buy from you again and again but will sing your praises to everyone that they know.
Talk sells and responsive customer service sells.
Referrals are again another Internet marketing tactic that gets your clients sell for you.
The simplest way to boost referrals is to identify the clients that love you. And, the time frame that the love affair lasts. Determine how long a given demographic is going to rave about your product or service. Once you have that information, you know when to time the next great change in your service or your newest product release.
The simple idea is to keep your clients raving about your business. Do that by keeping them constantly excited with new and different products. This effort should not be much of a burden on your business or financial picture, That’s because the love affair usually lasts between two and four months before interest starts to drop.
Do not wait for referrals. You need to ask for them. A simple line that says “if you like us then tell your friends” may be all you need. You never get anything unless you ask for it.
Twitter is a very powerful tool if you want to turn your store into a profitable one, because it can attract more people to your business. Social media is a gold mine when it comes to promoting any type of business. It doesn’t matter what you sell, because the effect will be the same. Twitter can reach so many people in a short period that will generate interest in the customer niche you want. Some business owners opt to have business profile pages on several social networks, while some concentrate on only one social network. The choice is yours, but if you want to use Twitter to successfully promote your online store, here is what you need to know to make it happen.
Your business identity should be well branded on Twitter
If you want to start advertising successful ly for your online store on Twitter, you need to start with the basics. It is not enough just to create a profile containing the name of your business, waiting for people to find you. Even if they do find you, the lack of relevant information in your profile will sent them away. That’s because they won’t know what your business profile is all about.
So, start by creating a professional identity and voice on Twitter, by making sure that your profile is presentable and contains useful information about your brand and business. In other words, let people know who you are and what you provide through your brand and online store.
Make offers in the original Twitter way
Everyone appreciates a great deal! And, if you can make an offer dedicated for Twitter users, it will be even better. A Twixclusive is an offer that will be available just on Twitter. It will attract a large number of people interested in your shop in a very short time frame.
How can you make this work? Make a special offer or limited time discount for all your followers. Decide on the offer that you will make. Then, create a tweet letting people know about it. Include a link that leads to the specific page in your store if you are promoting a special product. Or, include a special code Twitter followers will be able to use at the checkout if you’re giving a discount for entire store. And, don’t forget to add the hashtag #Twixclusive.
You will be amazed to see how much traffic this will generate to your online shop. Some of your visitors will take the special offer and others won’t, but will search other products. Also, you will enjoy more sales and other retweets, which is the equivalent of sharing news on Facebook, made by your loyal followers.
Organize a campaign called Flock to Unlock
Make it fun and interesting for your customers by creating special actions for them to complete, in order to enjoy a special offer in your store. Let’s say that you will choose to reveal your special offer only after a certain number of retweets have been sent. This way, you will also make sure that more and more people know about your online store.
To start with, find out which one of your products are most interesting, in the opinion of your followers. You can do that by simply asking a question on Twitter, asking them to offer feedback.
Once you know what that product is, launch the challenge to unlock the special offer for that product. After you decide how many retweets you want to achieve, create a tweet where you include precise instructions on how to unlock the special offer.
When the number of retweets was achieved, let your followers know that the special offer was unlocked. Send the code for the special offer. And, don’t forget to post a tweet once the campaign is over. Mention a few positive benefits that happened as a result of the campaign.
Increase the interests in new coming products
You can use Twitter in increasing the interest of your clients in the products that are about to appear in your online store in the near future. Start posting tweets about the new products in the weeks before they are introduced in the shop and become available for ordering.
Put hints in the tweets to make your followers interested about what will come. You can combine this with a Flock to Unlock campaign. The big prize will be a video or photo of the new product. The campaign ends with the product available for purchase in your store.
It’s highly recommended that you pay attention to those tweets you post that generate the biggest attention from your followers. You can use these tweets in the future when you have another new product launch. All you have to do is make some adjustments so the tweets work for the new product.
Use events to promote your online store
Whenever you have an important event, you can use it to promote your business. It doesn’t make any difference if these events in your industry, sporting events, seasonal, or cultural events. They can all become an excellent way to attract even more attention on your store.
Use hashtags with the name of the event. Create a tweet that includes a mentioning of the event and something that will connect it to your online store. For instance, if it is Mother’s Day and you sell, among other things, detergent pods. Use the #Mother’s Day and the mention that your brand of detergent pods will make their day brighter. You get the idea at this point. It is all about creating tweets that people enjoy seeing that connect you to the holiday or event. Your events can be international, national, and even local, as long as they are known by most people.
So, Twitter can indeed be a tool of turning your online store into a very profitable business. By simply exploring the pleasure people get from spending time on social media you get the benefits. It’s true that your business profile on Twitter will need some effort and attention, as mentioned earlier. But, the rewards will be substantial.
The best way to enjoy your rewards will be in the sales numbers at the end of the month. Don’t hesitate to use Twitter if you want to become a proud business owner.
Instagram provides an opportunity to market your online store, like other social media platforms,. But with Instagram, you know that you are using nothing but the best. And, you will achieve the most favorable results. It is very important to keep up with the latest trends. Once you lose the track, it becomes really difficult to make your mark. If you want to reach an unimaginable magnitude of audiences, be there on Instagram because that is essential for your success.
Know what is there for you:
It is extremely important to gain familiarity with Instagram before starting out with an account of your own. You must know what is there for you in the app. And, what is the best possible way it can be utilized to provide your business with the desired promotion. Remember one thing that all social media does not work in the same. The same techniques cannot be fruitful for all. It’s better to understand clearly in what way Instagram can help you out.
Let Your Images Speak for Your Store:
Instagram is all about IMAGES! Yes, there is nothing more important than it because this social media giant started off as an image sharing resource and continues to do so. The power which your images carry cannot be matched by anything else.
Share your Story, for Fun!
People like it when they are getting to know more about their favorite brand or company. Sharing some short and sweet details of your story with the followers won’t hurt, in fact, it will bring about more people who are interested in what you have to tell them about yourself. It also helps in building a certain level of trust amongst the company and the followers.
Utilize the Full Potential of Hashtags:
After images, Instagram is all about hashtags. Use the right hashtag and you are good to be a popular trend on it. You can even go about on using some of the already popular hashtags to bring your business in the limelight.
Use the Power of Experience:
Let people know what kind of feedback your store has been getting from the audience so far. One success story can give rise to many. How is your store providing people quality? How affordable are the rates? How quick and cheap is the delivery? What are your amazing policies on return and exchange? All this will help you out in building a strong rapport with your customers.
Partner Up with People:
Look up for some famous people on the Instagram because their popularity can actually help you out in being ahead of your competitors. Let them use your platform to increase their popularity and let yourself benefit from it.
Give Your Consumers’ the Purchasing Power:
There will be many people out there who would post something bought from your online store and would either use the hashtag or tag you in the post. Respond to such customers as soon as you can because they will help in planting the shopping seed in the rest of the Instagram following.
Be Communicative with the Customers:
Reply to their questions and queries because that helps in creating a great bond between the company and the customers. If they are appreciating you then thank them because once the customers start feeling valued on your account, they are not going to deviate their loyalties.
Short and catchy videos are also a fun way to attract users to the account. Videos not only convey a lot of information within a short time but also provide visual entertainment to the masses. They serve as a medium to establish the authenticity of any situation or happening.
Come up with exciting contests to grab the attention of the users. You can use quizzes like fill in the blanks or choose the right answer along with exciting giveaways to make your followers stay on your page. The gifts are the best way to make people happy and more loyal towards your store.
Stay Original, Do Not Misuse the Filters:
Though Instagram is famous for its filters it’s better not to use them too frequently because they tend to leave people with questions. When people are sure that what they are seeing is the original picture of any particular product or item, they will form more trusted opinions of the store.
Look for the Right Time and Right Day to Post an Update:
You don’t want to choose a time when people are in the office or asleep to launch anything. Or, to break a new piece of information on your Instagram account. It is better to choose those days and time when people will be most likely browsing the internet. For example, during the weekends or when people are home from their office.
Include a Link to Boost Traffic to Your Online Store:
This is one way that people will not miss coming directly to your website. It is better to incorporate the link in your bio because this will ensure maximum clicks on it. It’s the first thing that is read by your users. You don’t have to put it in your posts time after time.
You must keep in mind that that you are using one of the most powerful marketing means. That puts a set of responsibilities on the shoulders of the online store owner. Use it in the right way and make your company well known. But, one single wrong move can cost you your name and reputation. Keep the above-mentioned things in mind and you are ready to enjoy your thriving online store.
Chat adds convenience to your online store. Convenience is key for your customer’s satisfaction. And, for your profits. As customers peruse products, questions may come up. While a phone call may seem like a hassle, a chat service will seem convenient and easy. Stores with these services are more likely to increase sales. The most important part of any online business is turning all who wander in to become buying customers. Chat services are necessary for all online businesses.
As customers are in the middle of a purchase, they may find themselves running into questions. Customers often need a live person during the purchasing process to ensure customer satisfaction and understanding. Chat provides instant response to questions at any time of day. That’s without any need to go through the process of a phone call full of automated, button-pushing steps. It provides a simple, personal experience for the customer. This leaves an impression on the customer, causing them to come back for more.
While there is a cost involved to run a the service, the profit outcome is worth it. Generally, the cost of the service ends up coming out even when considering the effects. Live chat increases the likelihood of sale for potential customers, thus allowing the business to thrive. Customers feel peace of mind knowing they can ask a question at any time, or get help when they feel even the slightest bit of confusion. Being as many businesses do not utilize chat services, a business that chooses to use it stands out to customers, furthering the ability to make more money.
A Personal Experience is Key
When a chat sound too automated, customers can be deterred. In order to effectively use the chat service, those running the chat should provide a personal experience. From the customer’s perspective, using the chat should feel no different than in-person discussion.
In order to ensure a positive user experience, the chat service should be instant. To make this possible, pay attention to the hours at which business attention surges. If there is a particular portion of the day during which an influx of potential customers comes to the website, tack on some extra staff to manage the messages.
Make sure that all employees have had experience with customer service. All employees should understand customer-needs in order to adequately respond to all questions and concerns. Chat representatives represent the business, and can be an essential asset to increased sales. Proper staffing is vital for this to work.
Even the set up of the chat should have personalizing capabilities. An elder individual may require larger font sizes. If the chat has volume, consider options for adjustment.
Leave Room for Feedback
If chat users are able to respond about the chat experience, frequent dilemmas can become resolved. It is difficult to know where a service fails if there is no data available to check. If customers and chat users rate their experience and provide feedback, the business can reflect on what aspects of the chat fail, or what requires attention. This provides the ability to endlessly improve chat, as to provide the highest quality customer service.
Research Chat Options
There numerous chat software options available. Understanding which fits your business best is important to the quality of your customer service. Each chat service has different options and specifications available. Think about what is necessary for the business, and analyze which chat service best suits this list of needs.
Select Hours Carefully
Chat is ideal when usable 24 hours a day. If nightfall leads to no customers, there is no need to keep a representative on duty all day and night. Consider allowing those in need of chat in closed hours to send a direct email.
If you can, it is not a bad idea to begin with 24-hour services. Slowly lessen hours over time. It is hard to know what type of business will arise in the midst of the night if a chat does not yet exist. If there is only a customer at 3 a.m. once a week, there is no need to staff a chat representative. Consider traffic at all hours, day and night. Assess at what times customer volume is highest or lowest, and with this, determine chat hours.
Chat services should provide simple response to customers. If a chat begins to sway, customers can feel confused or agitated, not to mention, other customers end up waiting on personal conversations to end. The chat is simply to answer questions and land purchases. The staff in charge of chat should take the job seriously. No matter who the patron, staff needs to be respectful and concise. There should be no jumbled phrases that lead the customer away from making a purchase.
Keep in mind a chat service heavily represents a company. When someone runs chat services with broken English, customers feel as though their money is funding job outsourcing, and also feel their presence is not important. Allow the chat to feel as though it fits the needs of the customer, while still being a pleasure for the business. Do not hire chat representatives with poor ability to express a warm personality over messaging and online discussion.
Think About Your User
If users are to be over a particular age, ensure all chat representatives understand this. Elderly individuals may need more instruction or more help than the young individuals. Young adults may not require a complete, step-by-step process to understand what they have asked about. Consider the audience need.
Train Your Staff
Make sure there is some form of consistency among chat sessions. Customers do not want to have a great experience once and a horrible experience the next time. The experience should be all around positive each and every time used. If the staff are not trained in a consistent way, customers will be unaware if the company truly cares about the customer or not. Customer satisfaction is key for success.
Referral Marketing – Get the Power by Launching Your Own Campaign
By Nicholas Hurd
Many research papers have proved that the best option of marketing for sales and conversions is starting your own Referral Marketing Campaign. Referral Campaign is also known as word-of-mouth marketing. That’s because it is all about one person giving his own opinion or advice to other for purchasing some product. And it is the most powerful type of marketing as people like to get help from others. And, they trust their opinions and experiences while purchasing almost any product.
Think about it like this: we commonly like to get advice and recommendations from our friends and family. Especially about watching some TV show or movies in our precious time. And as consumers, we also like to share our stories and experiences about the products and brands we choose. This becomes more useful when it comes to buying unique type of products.
After reading this post, I’m sure you’ll agree that the referral marketing is the most effective way of marketing. I’ll describe to you the three main reasons why the referral marketing has become so powerful in this modern age. In this post, you’ll also find some examples of successful referral campaigns, In addition, you’ll also find some effective tactical steps, so you can also launch your own powerful referral marketing and boost your business.
Here’s Why the Referral Marketing Has Become So Powerful In This Modern Age
Now every businessman knows that the referral marketing is the most effective and powerful forms of marketing, but in this post, let’s jump into, why?
Following are some core reasons for this, explained in detail:
1. Targeted Marketing
If you have used Google Adwords or Facebook Ads, you’ll know how it feels to watch right before your eyes money slipping through your hands. I am not saying that it is the problem of platform you are using for marketing. I am trying to explain how these platforms are important in a different way than targeting your main audience. And, that can result in waste of money if you aren’t very careful. A marketing campaign requires two key components to be perfect and effective, a great brand message for the audience and highly-specific audience targeting.
However, word-of-mouth marketing, that is, referral marketing works because it’s a highly targeted audience. It works perfectly because people like to know the choices of their friends and social audiences. In this type of marketing your brand message spreads more successfully than with most other marketing channels and moreover in very less expenses.
Credibility is a very important factor especially when it comes to convincing someone to buy something. If we don’t trust someone, how can we listen to their advice and recommendations or implement them as they say. Let’s consider yourself in this place, think that a salesperson you don’t know very well yet come to sell you something and you have doubts about his sanity due to lack of trust, ask yourself will you do act upon the advice of that man?
However through referral marketing, the sales always come from the person that customer already knows well such as friends and family. They also come from any trustworthy source such as popular newspapers or favorite blogs.
Research has demonstrated that customers always go with salesperson opinions if the brands carefully design the organic advertisements and sales pitches.
A latest research “Marketing Trust Study” also proved that the referral marketing is the most trusted and reliable form of advertising so far:
But remember, it is not necessary that referrals always just can be friends and family. Referrals can be of variety of types, it depends on the audience you are serving. Following are some main types of referral channels?
· Friends and Family
· Authentic Newspapers
· Customer Reviews, Reports and Surveys
· Reliable Blogs or Social Media Sites
3. Influence of the Client
In previous decades, the reach and influence of the average customers was very limited. However, in this era of the Internet, Facebook, Twitter and smart phones, the average customer’s reach is much bigger than before. ‘Now many people have become social icons, with enormous followings. They can make or break a business with what they say about it online.
At this time, with a simple blog post, article or just a tweet, people can make hundreds of credible fan following in a matter of seconds. This kind of social reach is also an important reason for developing your referral marketing.
Examples Of a Company That Used Referral Marketing to Catapult Their Businesses
So we have gone into how referral marketing affects a business, now let’s look at an example of a company that got rich with perfect strategy of referral marketing.
Harry’s is an innovative Men Grooming Product Company. Their shaving supplies for men are one of finest in the market today. The demand for their products was huge in a just a few days, and you know how, by referral marketing.
In the 4-Hour Workweek Blog, Jeff Raider, co-founder of the Harry’s shares in his post that their Referral Campaign used to get over 100,000 sign-ups even before launching. They pre-launched the referral marketing campaign on their webpage with a gift offer, and by that they were able to launch to a massive audience.
Above shows how companies get extreme benefits from referral marketing. So now you should use power of referral marketing.
4. How You Can Use Referral Marketing in Your Business
Use your email receipt to encourage your customers to tell their friends and acquaintances about their experience with your product or service.
Add product reviews to your website and products
read the reviews you receive to find anyone that’s had a problem. If so, you can react to it and clear up the situation
Add social links to your items so people can post on their social media
Track social media to find any negative reviews or remarks. Reach out to your customer to clear up the situation
If it’s a good review, send a thank you.
Find any influencers in market place. See if you can get them to review your product. Or, add it to a review of products like yours.
How to Use Coupons to Build Your e-Commerce Website
By Nicholas Hurd
The good thing about e-commerce is, you don’t need to leave your 9-5 job to start an online store. Coupons are powerful tools that can attract customers to your e-commerce website whether they are new customers or repeat. However, they are not for everyone. You have to ensure that they fit into your brand strategy. Here are some tips to attract customers using coupons and discounts.
Coupons on Twitter
Offering coupons and discounts on Twitter- Twitter is a popular place to post coupon codes. Just make a list of your most popular items (or items you can afford to give a discount or a coupon on). Next, write a decent post promoting the coupon or discount. Add a picture of the item and a coupon code. Now append a hashtag to the post (with your brand name or keyword) and you are done. Tweet about the coupons a number of times. Just don’t duplicate the tweets.
You might also consider a Twitter ad. It’s similar to posting and reaches a different audience than your followers. Start with a $5 budget just to test the waters.
Coupons on Facebook
Offering coupons and discounts on Facebook- Facebook also allows hashtags now (you can post the same hashtags you used to promote the product on your Twitter account). To improve the response to your coupons and discounts, try uploading a photo of the product. Do append a short message about the coupon or discount to the post.
Marketing discounts and coupons on coupon websites- If you are really in a hurry to make that first sale, you can try putting coupons on coupon websites. These sites receive a lot of visits from people who are specifically looking for coupons. The drawbacks of these websites are, they cater to people who are looking for the cheapest prices and they won’t necessarily be brand ambassadors.
Using coupons without harming your brand
Coupons are good for customers but not so good for your brands. If you are not careful, coupons can cause tremendous losses. But used occasionally and strategically, coupons can be very useful. They can boost your online sales, increasing your market share. Here are some ways to use coupons without damaging your brand.
Coupons to Move Inventory
Using coupons to move inventory that won’t move on your e-Commerce website. The most obvious place to use coupons is to move inventory that is not selling. Inventory that won’t move can be very dangerous for your business. Coupon codes can move these goods. You can either provide a straight offer or give them away for free, if the customer orders for a particular amount. For example, “All toaster orders above $150 receive a free toaster cover. Coupon code: TOASTER01”.
Using coupons to show your appreciation to your customers- Loyal customers are your best friends. Pleasing old customers and keeping them loyal to your brand is easier than acquiring new ones. Emailing coupons and special discounts to your old customers is a good way to show your appreciation for their continued patronage of your brand and your e-Commerce website.
Using automatic rewards to reward customers- You can also apply automatic discounts to a new customer’s first purchase from your business, without informing them upfront. You can also consider waiving their shipping fee on the first order. Giving customers pleasant surprises is a good tactic to create lifetime customers.
Everybody likes discounts and coupons but you don’t want give them out on a regular basis. Otherwise, customers will think you are charging too much for the goods in the first place. Or, they will wait to make a purchase until a coupon or discount is available.
Sometimes, it is best not to reduce prices. This race to the bottom can have disastrous effects, so be careful. Why not offer better customer service or a unique brand experience. Still coupons and discounts have their place. E-commerce is all about finding out the best ways to serve your customers and give them the best value for their money. In this context, discounts and coupons can really help.
Unique Selling Proposition: What is It and How Do I Use It to Promote My Store?
By Nicholas Hurd
A unique selling proposition, or USP, is a concept that is very easy to understand, but it might be a bit tricky to develop for your company. The term has often been described as the personal brand of a company. As you probably know by now, the personal brand of your company should be unique so that it draws as many customers as possible. You cannot afford to have a concept, logo, or even product that is exactly the same as anyone else’s. You need to define what sets your product or service apart from all your competitors.
In today’s world consumerism is at its highest and people are constantly becoming bored of what they have. It is very difficult for business owners to keep track of consumer behavior which is exactly why you need a unique selling proposition. This is the main element in any company that allows the user to switch brands and keep them there for a very long time. The right unique selling proposition can help you propel your profits into a whole new category at the end of the day.
Differentiate Your Product or Service
The unique selling proposition (or USP for short) is the factor of any company that makes them different or even better from any other company in the area or even within the same service sphere. It makes a business stand out from the rest. It is usually one feature of a product or service that is different from the competition and shows the consumer that no other product or service will benefit them in this particular way. Successfully communicating the very essence of the unique selling proposition is one of the most important aspects of branding your company.
Unique selling propositions might fulfill the function of creating unique branding and enticing customers, but this can be difficult when there are so many new products on the market. The main thing that you should do is find a gap in the market. You should create something that will attract attention and make sure it is something that customers need. This need can be created without customers knowing about it. Business owners are encouraged to implement unique selling propositions into their branding and selling of products or services. Here are a few ways in which you can implement unique selling propositions in order to achieve maximum exposure to your brand.
Develop Your Unique Selling Proposition
Step 1 – Define Your Target Audience
Before you can sell anything, you need to define your target audience. Who are you selling your product or service to? You need to be as specific as possible. You may find it easiest to create an Avatar. What does your target market look like: age, sex, family, income, work, etc. Be as detailed as possible with this step. You want to do that because the avatar you create here can and should also be used when you are thinking about advertising. It’s also used when you are designing your website for your target audience.
Step 2 – Define the Problem You Solve
This is from your customer’s perspective. What problem/challenge does your product or service solve. If you don’t solve a problem you don’t have a product or service.
Step 3 – What are Your Distinct Benefits?
What are 3-5 benefits that your customer gets from your product or service? What do you provide that is different than anyone else serving your customer? The benefits don’t have to be huge. Think about the fast food industry. McDonalds had hamburgers that you essentially got what they produced and Burger King came out with “have it your way”. Is that a huge difference? I don’t think so.
Step 4 – Define Your Promise to Your Customers
What are you promising your customers your product or service will do for them? Define you pledge to your customers. For example, Chipoltle defines their promise as providing fresh, organic Mexican food served promptly.
Step 5 – Combine Your Ideas
Combine all your ideas into one paragraph that tells your story. The story you want your customers to understand. Take a few minutes and make the paragraph, or two, a statement of what your business stands for.
Step 6 – Compress It
Now take your paragraph and find the essence of what it says. Compress it down into as few words as possible, that still express’s your uniqueness. This is the hardest step and may take you hours. You may find that this evolves over days. Take the time you need to make it the absolute best you can. Do it today, look at it tomorrow and the day after.
Check out this example of a great USP is the old Domino’s Pizza USP: “You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less—or it’s free”. You’ll find some other successful USP at this Wikipedia article
Email Marketing: a Powerful Tool to Boost Your Online Store
By Nicholas Hurd
Use email marketing to increase the visitors to your online store and get more sales.
Reaching large audiences is one of the biggest goals for nearly every business. Virtual communication, email marketing being a form of it, has opened doors wide for everyone to accomplish this aim. Though eCommerce strategies change constantly, email marketing remains a preferable way of communicating information. The reason is simple: 48% of consumers prefer to communicate with brands via email.
BEFORE YOU GET STARTED
Set a clearly defined goal for Your Email Marketing
Before even starting to create your first email campaign, you should define the short and long term goals you want to achieve via email marketing. Rushing to send your first campaign without deep consideration can only ruin what you have planned for weeks and months. Slow down. Think and rethink what your main concerns are and what tasks you have to accomplish for your company to succeed. Before pushing the “Send” button, you should be able to clearly say whether you want to inform about a service, develop loyalty towards your company, or encourage making a purchase.
In addition, you should draw a realistic picture of how long it will take you to accomplish your goals with the newly developed strategy at hand. If your aim and the timing are vague, even a wonderfully designed email campaign can end up being a failure.
Thou Shall Not Spam!
How many emails have you marked as spam because you didn’t know why you had received them? The answer is probably – many. Take your own experience seriously: you should have a prior permission for every single email address to be added to your list. It is the number one factor to ensure readability and high open rates.
For compiling an authentic email list, create a clear subscription form, so that your visitors can easily sign up. Create pop-ups on your website, if you want to increase subscription rates. Be aware that email providers have effective mechanisms to detect spammers. And the punishment is very severe: you lose the chance to land in the inboxes of your present and future customers. Moreover, spam detecting services share information about spammers, so you should be very cautious not to be “caught” by any of them.
To avoid being added to the “black list”, many marketers prefer developing an opt-in email subscription process. The idea is to provide an opportunity for people to submit email addresses on their own and after being notified what kind of content they are going to receive.
Use Double Opt-in
The concept of double opt-in emails helps more cautious companies to take a step forward. After subscription, users need to go to their inboxes and confirm that they want to get information from a particular company. Though building a double opt-in email list takes more time, this two-step mechanism ensures that those who subscribe really want to see your emails in their inboxes. This guarantees higher open rates and ensures low figures in the bounce back and unsubscribe stats.
Some people don’t like double opt-in because it reduces the number of opt-ins. So, they will go with single opt-in. The reality is that if someone goes through the double opt-in process they are really interested in what you have to say. That means they are much more likely to open your emails. And they are more likely to purchase whatever it you are selling.
Enable sharing and recommending
For enriching your email list with real addresses, allow people to share their positive experiences and recommend your products or services. Arm your satisfied customers with all the tools to spread the word about your brand. They should be able to talk about you on social sites and send your emails to a friend. Be ready to meet people on your website where new users can easily sign up to your email list. It is also important to make your email campaign readable and shareable on smartphones and tablets. Use responsive templates to provide effortless experience to those who view your email on their mobile devices. The more people talk about you, the higher are rates of subscription.
DEVELOPING AN EMAIL MARKETING CAMPAIGN
After you have set clear expectations for email marketing and developed a working strategy to build authentic email lists, it’s time to create campaigns that will boost your business opportunities. A challenge is awaiting for you here: you should be able to stand out among thousands of other companies which strive to achieve people’s inboxes.
Send a welcome email
It’s always good to greet your new customers with an email before you provide regular information about your business and encourage taking an action. Welcome emails accomplish so much; they are the first impression your customers will get. Try to make their first experience of communicating with your brand memorable and enchanting.
Consider some mechanics for Your Email Marketing
Think of the subject line of your email and make it engaging. Phrases like “last chance” and “now only” will create an atmosphere of emergency and drive people to take action. Avoid ALL CAPS and extra exclamation marks (!!!) as they not only look unprofessional, but also can be the reason for being marked as a spammer. In addition, make sure you jump at your main point immediately; don’t force your customers to read long sentences and paragraphs before you bring your main message home. Keep the content simple and short. Last but not least, before pushing the “Send” button, make sure that all the provided information is precise and correct. Wrong links and typos are indicators of being careless which will affect the recipients’ perception of your brand negatively.
Define the best time to send an email
Have you ever asked your boss for something and got an immediate rejection? Did you ask for the same thing next time, when he or she is in a good mood, and enjoyed a positive answer? Obviously, timeless communication can be worse than no communication at all. People behave differently at different times. The same refers to sending emails. You can schedule your delivery for a particular day and fail altogether; or you can pick up the right moment and become a complete winner.
For example, if you are planning an email campaign for students, take into account any important events in students’ life. Are they preparing for exams? Is it a graduation day accompanied with farewell parties? Are they on holidays without any intention to check their emails? Apparently, your choice on when to contact your customers will differ if you take the answers to these questions seriously.
Choose the day or the period when your readers are most likely not only to check their emails but also spend money on what you offer. Also, think of the frequency with which you would like to contact your customers and prospects: is it more purposeful to send emails daily, weekly, or monthly? Look back to your strategic plan to make an informed decision.
Put your email addresses into different groups
Grouping or segmentation is an important tool to create targeted emails and sharpen your focus. Let’s turn to statistics: 39% of marketers who segmented their email lists experienced higher open rates. So, analyze your business priorities and create segments according to different criteria. Divide your list by location (country, city), demographics (age, gender, language, education, income, etc.), or behavior (consider degree of loyalty, first-time clients, active/passive clients, etc.).
Wonder how you can make use of this strategy? Consider this example. If only one of your stores is offering a discount on particular products, there is no need to send emails to every person on your email list; you risk frustrating the addressees who have no opportunity to benefit from your offer. Instead, you had better create a campaign targeting people who live in that particular region. This is a great tool to afterwards personalize your emails, which implies but is not limited to addressing people by name, profession, location, etc.
Send personalized emails
“Spice” your regular communication with special campaigns throughout the year. A big or first purchase, a birthday or an anniversary are great chances to get in touch with your customers in a personalized way, especially if statistics proves the effectiveness of this method. Personalized emails improve clickability rates by 14% and conversion rates by 10%.
TIME TO FOLLOW-UP
Email marketing, like any other form of marketing, needs testing and deep analysis of reports to prove its overall effectiveness.
There a large number of tools to check the effectiveness of your campaign. A/B testing is one of them. It enables to create variations of one and the same email campaign by changing subject lines, templates, colors, content, addressor’s name, etc. Send these variations to separate groups and watch which variant works best. For example, you can check whether emails from a person’s name or from a company’s name work better. Also find out which subject line works most effectively: a teaser, a question or a call-to-action? Send test emails and find the top performing variation. Keep in mind that correct testing and targeting methods can increase conversion rates by 300%!
Keep track of records. They can tell you so much about your customers’ behavior. You will find out which links were the most popular, what is the age, location, and gender of people you have opened your email. You will get prompts to rethink some aspects of your email campaign if the open and click rates are very low. Reap the benefits of reports: find your mistakes and try not to repeat them when you send your next email campaign.
Avoid being monotonous!
It is boring to regularly receive emails which resemble in content and design. Periodically hook your readers by updated, attractive subject lines, content, and design. Consider refreshing the layout and the template from time to time.
The business world is highly competitive. In order to survive, you should be flexible. Not only to use but also to combine as many marketing strategies as possible. Email marketing, being one of them, is a powerful tool. To make most use of it, you should have a clearly defined vision, a pre-designed strategy to compile email lists, and always consider the timing. Creative design and straightforward texts will take you a step forward by keeping your audience engaged with the information you provide. Follow-up activities will make the picture of your email marketing holistic: analyze your reports and cast a reflective look on what you have done. Always be open to apply corrections and never be afraid to realize new ideas.