small businesses

drag2share: Social Media As Part of Marketing Mix of Small Businesses

source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/~3/m3safwzygl4/a-primer-on-social-crm-2013-8

An in-depth discussion of social CRM products goes beyond the scope of this report, but since a social strategy potentially involves patching together many different solutions, it’s worth taking a peek at the landscape.

Most companies that are longtime players in the CRM space have noticed the demand for social media-integrated add-ons.

Small BusinessesSalesforce is perhaps the biggest name to expand into social strategies for customer management. The company has made numerous acquisitions in an effort to make social a key element of its cloud-based tools. The major downside to the Salesforce Marketing Cloud and related products is the price tag. (Starting at $5,000 per month, the price puts the platform out of reach for the one-fifth of smaller U.S. businesses who use CRM systems.)


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Wednesday, August 28th, 2013 news No Comments

Benefits of Social Media Marketing According to Small Businesses

source: http://www.emarketer.com/Article/How-B2Bs-Working-Social-Leads/1010162

While tried-and-true B2B marketing techniques such as search engine optimization (SEO) and email still bring plenty of prospects to the door, social media entices them to enter a dialogue, pick up some information of value and step into the sales funnel. Social provides an environment where salespeople can develop a relationship with potential purchasers. Moreover, according to a January 2013 survey of both business-to-consumer (B2C) and B2B marketers at small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) worldwide by Social Media Examiner, it provides a host of other benefits as well.

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Monday, August 26th, 2013 news No Comments

Facebook Ads Are About To Get A Whole Lot More Attractive

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/facebook-gives-advertisers-shutterstock-access-2013-8

Shutterstock multiple image selection feature

Facebook announced a partnership with Shutterstock today that will allow ad makers to use the site’s images for free. 

Marketers can now access Shutterstock’s inventory of millions of high-quality images directly through Facebook’s ad creation tool. The social network says the new feature will be particularly helpful for small businesses, which may not have previously had the resources to procure quality images for their ads.

This is also good news for Facebook users: Those sidebar ads are probably going to start looking a lot more attractive.

Advertisers will also now be able to upload multiple images with the ad creation tool in order to test which one works best.

“As the digital world becomes increasingly visual, businesses need images to stand out and reach new audiences,” said David Fraga, Shutterstock’s vice president of corporate development. “Not every business has a team of designers to help communicate their message, and so the Shutterstock integration allows Facebook advertisers of all sizes to search and choose from millions of high-quality images at the point of ad creation.”

Here’s what marketers will be looking at in Facebook’s page manager app on iOS:

Facebook Pages Manager App With Shutterstock

 

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Tuesday, May 14th, 2013 news No Comments

Google Violated Its Own Evil-Free Policies While Promoting Chrome [Google]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5872566/google-violated-its-own-evil+free-policies-while-promoting-chrome

Google Violated Its Own Evil-Free Policies While Promoting Chrome

The first rule of not being evil is: don’t do things you think are evil. So it’s a shame that Google has violated its own policy by giving bloggers cash in exchanges for writing about its browser, Chrome.

Google, or perhaps more likely its advertising firm Unruly, has managed to sponsor bloggers to chew the fat over Chrome, reports SEO Book. Some of them talk about how great Chrome is for small businesses, and most contain a Google promo video.

Meh, that’s kind of fine, right? Mmm, the thing is, paid-for links to the Chrome download page would be just fine according to Google’s rules — as long as they were tagged up as “nofollow” links. That’s supposed to let PageRank know that a link was paid for so as to exclude it from search rankings.

But, uh, some of the links didn’t follow that guideline.

OK, so this isn’t too bad: it isn’t like Google is culling small kittens, granted. And it could in fact be an innocent mistake on the part of the bloggers. But what it more likely indicates is that Google is getting so large that it can’t help but trip over its own policies. And at that point, it becomes difficult to hold an entire organisation up to its existing ethical codes.

So, don’t be evil. At least, if you can remember what you mean by evil. [SEO Book via TechCrunch; Image: brionv]


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Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012 news No Comments

This Bakery Had To Make 102,000 Cupcakes Because Of A Groupon Deal And Lost A Ton Of Money

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/london-baker-makes-102000-cupcakes-groupon-deal-2011-11


need a cake bakery

A London bakery recently experienced the worst-case scenario of offering a Groupon for a small business, and it cost the owner thousands (via NBC Chicago).

Need a Cake bakery owner Rachel Brown decided to put up a 75% discount on a dozen cupcakes on the site, which dropped the price down to $10 from $40.

Apparently, people really love getting cupcakes cheap, because she was rushed by throngs of customers in a cupcake frenzy. 8,500 people signed up, and her crew of eight had to make 102,000 cupcakes to meet the orders.

Brown lost $3 per batch because she had to hire 25 extra workers to help, and she ended up losing $20,000 because of it, which a ton for a small biz. It wiped out her profits for the year, reports the Daily Mail.

“Without doubt, it was my worst ever business decision,” she told the BBC. “We had thousands of orders pouring in that really we hadn’t expected to have. A much larger company would have difficulty coping.”

This is just the latest in Groupon small business horror stories. A story popped up in September about a Portland cafe losing $8,000 because of a Groupon, which prompted a personal letter from founder and CEO Andrew Mason.

It brings up the always-present question about the daily deals site: does Groupon suck for small businesses?

Well, it looks like most small businesses think so. An overwhelming majority of 70% hate Groupon, if the latest survey from iContact is to be believed.

As for Brown and her bakery, the experience may have cost her 20 grand, but what about all the exposure she’s getting for her store? Great, right? It doesn’t hurt, but it probably wasn’t worth the cost.

Small businesses like this bakery thrive on relationships with their local customers, not crowds of outsiders coming in to snatch up a free lunch.

Getting new customers is great, but in this case, the bakery rewarded the wrong customers. Those 8,500 people that rushed for the Groupon probably won’t be coming back to pay for the same cupcakes at quadruple the price.

Only those the store has nurtured relationships with for a long time (in Brown’s case, 25 years), should be the ones rewarded. They’re the ones that keep coming back for more.

NOW SEE: The 10 Largest Family Businesses In The US >

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Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011 news No Comments

Groupon’s Future Is Groupon Now

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/chart-of-the-day-groupon-now-2011-10


Groupon Now is a mobile app that shows users all the deals surrounding them on a map.

Because it allows Groupon to offer more deals than one per day, Groupon Now is the future of Groupon’s business.

As Groupon’s margins compress, Groupon Now is supposed to save the company by bringing in a huge volume of sales.

Also, because the deals are offered in “real-time” Groupon Now is an important part of Groupon’s plan to become a “yield management platform for small businesses” – as one source recently described the vision to us.

Unfortunately, according to Yipit, Groupon Now isn’t growing very fast.

Go read Yipit’s whole, careful breakdown of Groupon Now’s slowing growth for more >>

chart of the day, groupon now, october 2011

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Monday, October 24th, 2011 news No Comments

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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